Awami League General Secretary Syed Ashraful Islam, who was removed recently from the Local Government and Rural Development (LGRD) Ministry, will concentrate on party activities completely in future.
The statement was made by Ashraf's successor Khandker Mosharraf Hossain while talking to journalists after he took office at the LGRD Ministry on Sunday.
Apart from his ministerial responsibility at the Expatriates' Welfare and Overseas Employment, Mosharraf got his new assignment at the LGRD Ministry.
Prior to taking over his new charge, Mosharraf paid a courtesy call to Syed Ashraful Islam, now a
minister without portfolio, at the latter's official
residence on Baily Road in the city.
"It was a courtesy call. I had a meeting with Syed Ashraf as he served this ministry earlier," the new LGRD Minister told journalists.
Later, he held a meeting with the officials at the Ministry at the Secretariat.
Mosharraf said, "Syed Ashraf is our leader, our general secretary. We are his workers. He is going to take the party responsibility collectively to reorganise it."
Syed Ashraf, who lost his portfolio on Thursday, said, "There has to be cooperation between us."
Regarding probable reshuffle of the Cabinet, Mosharraf said, "I can say only that I am not losing my job within the next 15 days at least."
Known as a trusted lieutenant of the party chief and Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, Syed Ashraf drew flak in his party for his absence from important meetings. Party insiders said civil servants often found it difficult to work with Ashraf.
On his first day in office as LGRD Minister, Mosharraf on Sunday promised to work with a goal in line with fulfilling the Prime Minister's vision of achieving the status of a developed country by 2041.
"This vision will not be possible without development of the local government and cooperatives sector," he said.
He also noted that he would focus on improving the existing road networks under the Local Government Engineering Department (LGED) as well as making the services of the Rural Development and Cooperatives Division more accessible to rural people.
Syed Ashraf is the son of Bangladesh's acting President during the 1971 Liberation War, Syed Nazrul Islam, who was brutally murdered inside Dhaka's Central Jail on November 3, 1975 along with three other national leaders.
Khandker Mosharraf is the father-in-law of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina's daughter Saima Wazed Hossain Putul.
After the shuffle was announced on Thursday, he said he would 'remove corruption from the LGRD ministry like he did in the expatriates' welfare ministry'.
Mosharraf, the first chief engineer of the Rural Works Programme under the LGRD ministry, had a role in the creation of the LGED.