Newly elected NSW premier unveils fresh start ministry

The new Labor ministry has become the first in NSW history to have equal numbers of women and men.

The new Labor ministry has become the first in NSW history to have equal numbers of women and men. Photo: AAP

NSW Premier Chris Minns has unveiled his cabinet as the new Labor government celebrates making history with its slimmed-down ministry.

For the first time the NSW cabinet will have an equal mix of men and women – with the portfolios of energy, police, finance, regional transport and regional being assigned to women for the first time.

The ministry will be cut to 22 members, down from 26 in the previous government.

It will also be the first time a woman has led the government in the upper house, with Penny Sharpe taking on the portfolios of energy and climate change, and environment and heritage.

Jihab Dib, the incoming minister for customer service, emergency services and youth justice, will be the first sworn in on the Koran.

It follows new treasurer Daniel Mookhey becoming the first sworn in on the sacred Hindu text Bhagavad Gita.

The Minns government will govern in minority with 45 or 46 seats, with confidence and supply guaranteed by independent MPs Alex Greenwich, Greg Piper and Joe McGirr.

Mr Piper, the Member for Lake Macquarie, is set to be the next Speaker, with the Legislative Assembly voting when parliament returns next month.

“There is room for considerable improvement in the chamber and I look forward to working with all members to raise the regard for proceedings in the eyes of the public,” Mr Piper said on Tuesday.

“I thank Premier Minns for his endorsement, and I thank my colleagues on the crossbench for their ongoing support.”

More than 10 days after polling day, the only seat remaining in doubt is Ryde in northwest Sydney, where Liberal candidate Jordan Lane leads Labor’s Lyndal Howison by about 200 votes as counting continues.

Unveiling his full ministry on Tuesday, Mr Minns heaped praise on his colleagues.

“We have a lot of hard work in front of us, and a big responsibility, but my team and I are up to the challenge,” he said.

“We have a clear mandate from the people of NSW to rebuild our essential services, to invest in the people who look after us – our nurses, teachers, paramedics, firefighters and police officers.

“Our priority is to help families and households deal with the increasing cost of living, the energy crisis and to fix our schools and hospitals.”

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