Tibetan cabinet blend of old, new faces

September 16th, 2011 - 8:37 pm ICT by IANS  

Dharamsala, Sep 16 (IANS) The Tibetan government-in-exile, headed by new Prime Minister Lobsang Sangay, Friday announced a six-member cabinet, which is a blend of old and new faces.

An official spokesperson told IANS that the cabinet has two women ministers, one of them Dolma Gyari, former deputy speaker of the Tibetan Parliament.

Prime Minister Sangay introduced the six on the first day of the inaugural session of the 15th Tibetan parliament-in-exile.

The new ministers in the 14th cabinet are Dongchung Ngodup, Tsering Dhundup, Pema Chhinjor, Dolma Gyari, Dicki Chhoyang and Tsering Wangchuk. All, except Dhundup, were sworn in by Chief Justice Commissioner Ngawang Phelgyal Gyechen.

Ngodup, Dhundup and Chhinjor have been retained.

Chhinjor, the senior most member of Sangay’s cabinet, was the minister of security in the 11th cabinet.

A three-time former deputy speaker in parliament, Dolma is among the new faces in the cabinet.

After completion of her studies, she joined the women’s section of the Tibetan Youth Congress, a hardline group of the exiles.

From 1991 to 2006, she was elected as member of the parliament-in-exile for four consecutive terms.

Born 1974, Wangchuk is the youngest member in the cabinet. He is a medical officer at Tsojhe Khangsar Charity Hospital in Bylakuppe.

Chhoyang migrated to Canada in 1971 and worked as a community liaison officer for the University of Montreal Hospital Center construction project. She is a member of parliament-in-exile from North America.

The spokesperson said Sangay, who is also the chairman of the Kashag, will announce the portfolios of the new ministers Monday.

Sangay, at 43 the youngest to head the government-in-exile, had told IANS on assuming office Aug 8 that “now it is the responsibility of the younger generation to take the movement forward and seek a resolution to the Tibetan problem.”

According to Sangay, education will be the priority in domestic programmes and policy.

“The department of information and international relations and the department of education, which runs more than 100 schools, are the crucial ones,” he said.

“Creating awareness about Tibet and sustaining this awareness will also be priorities.”

Based in Dharamsala, the government-in-exile is not recognized by any country. There are about 140,000 Tibetans in exile, over 100,000 of them in India.

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