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The Government of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa is the provincial government of the province of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Pakistan. Its powers and structure are set out in the provisions of the 1973 Constitution, in which 26 districts come under its authority and jurisdiction. The government includes the cabinet, selected from members the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Assembly, and the non-political civil staff within each department. The province is governed by a unicameral legislature with the head of government known as the Chief Minister. The Chief Minister, invariably the leader of a political party represented in the Assembly, selects members of the Cabinet. The Chief Minister and Cabinet are thus responsible the functioning of government and are entitled to remain in office so long as it maintains the confidence of the elected Assembly. The head of state of the province is known as the Governor, while the administrative boss of the province is Chief Secretary Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.

The official and full name of the province is Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (formerly known as the Northwest Frontier Province). Often an abbreviation of “KP” or “KPK” is used by unknowing journalists and media outlets, although these terms neither appears in the Constitution, any treaties or in legal cases to which it is a party. The terms Government of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa or Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Government are often used in official documents. The seat of government is in Peshawar, thus serving as the capital of the province.


The Government of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa functions under the provisions of the Constitution of Pakistan (1973). The Province has a Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Assembly with 124 elected members, constituent of 99 Regular seats, 22 seats reserved for women and 3 seats for non-Muslims. The Provincial Assembly elects the Chief Minister of the Province who forms a Cabinet of Ministers to look after various Departments. The Chief Minister is the Chief Executive of the Province. The Federal Government appoints a Governor as head of the Provincial Government.

The bureaucratic machinery of the province is headed by Chief Secretary Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, who coordinates and supervises functions of various departments headed by departmental secretaries. The Chief Secretary is appointed by the Prime Minister of Pakistan. All the Secretaries are assisted by Additional Secretaries, Deputy Secretaries, Section Officers and other staff. The main departments may have attached departments and autonomous or semi-autonomous bodies to look after various functions.

Since the year 2001, the system of elected District Governments has been introduced. The Province is divided into 24 districts. The Districts are headed by a Zila Nazim or district mayor assisted by a District Coordination Officer, in charge of district bureaucracy. In a District, the functions are devolved further to the Tehsil, Town and Union Council Governments. Each District has an elected Zilla Council, elected Tehsil, Town, and Union Councils who look after various activities at their respective levels.

At the district level, a District Police Officer looks after the Law and Order and he reports to the Zila Nazim. Each district has a Public Safety Commission which addresses public complaints against the Police. There is a Provincial Police Officer who is in charge of the Police system at the provincial level.


The Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Provincial Assembly is the legislative branch of the provincial government. It is a unicameral legislature.


The Constitution grants numerous powers to Assembly. Enumerated in Article 123(3), 130, 141 and 142 the Constitution of Pakistan, these include the powers to manage the purse of the province, to keep checks on the policies and practices of the government and to make laws.