Politics of morocco
Politics of Morocco
Published on: Mar 4, 2016
Transcripts - Politics of morocco
A Constitutional, democratic,
Parliamentary and Social Monarchy
Kingdom of Morocco
The Kingdom of Morocco is one of the oldest
monarchies in the world. The Monarchy
is the guarantor of the country's unity and
the freedom of its citizens. Morocco has
maintained its commitment to its traditional
foundations while engaging in modernity. The
King of Morocco, symbol of the Unity of the
Nation, guarantor of the perpetuation and the
continuity of the State, ensures respect for
Islam and the Constitution and guarantees the independence of the Nation and the
territorial integrity of the Kingdom in its authentic borders. The King is the Supreme
Commander of the Royal Armed Forces.
“Morocco is a constitutional, democratic, parliamentary and social
monarchy.” Paragraph 1, Article 1 of the 2011 Constitution
The Government consists of the Head of Government and Ministers and remains
throughout its mandate answerable to the King and Parliament.The Government
is invested immediately after establishing its governmental program and obtaining
the consent and confidence of the House of Representatives, expressed by the
vote of an absolute majority of the members of the House. Under the authority of
the Head of Government, the Government implements its governmental program,
ensures the implementation of laws, arranges the administration and supervises the
activities of businesses and public institutions. The first Moroccan Government, after
independence, was established on December 7th, 1955. The present Government
(30th) was established on January 3rd, 2012.
“The king appoints the Head of the Government from the political
party which won the general election of the House of Representa-
tives’ members ... On proposal of the Head of the Government, the
King appoints the members of the Government”.
Paragraph 1 and 2, Article 47 of the 2011 Constitution
The Parliament consists of two chambers,
the House of Representatives and the
House of Councillors. The Parliamentary
Representatives are elected for a term of five
years by direct universal suffrage. The number
of Representatives, the electoral system,
the eligibility requirements, the system of
incompatibilities and the organization of
electoral disputes are determined by an
organic law. Members of the House of Councillors are elected, among the elected
bodies, for six years.
The Parliament holds two sessions per year. The opening of the first session is
chaired by the King and begins on the second Friday of October. The second session
begins the second Friday of April. The sessions of the two Houses of Parliament are
public. The report of the debates is published in the Official Bulletin.
“The members of Parliament are expected to set the best example by making
public interest prevail over all other considerations, thereby contributing to
the consolidation of the Moroccan distinctive model based on democracy and
Speech of His Majesty the King Mohammed VI to the Moroccan Nation on
November 12th, 2012
The judiciary is independent from the legislative and executive branches. Judges are
appointed by Dahir, on a proposal of the Magistracy Superior Council. The different
jurisdictions of the Kingdom are:
• Communal and Districts Courts; • Administrative Tribunals; • The Courts of First
Instance; • Courts of Appeal; • The Supreme Court; • The Permanent Tribunal of the
Royal Armed Forces; • Commercial Courts.
"No one is to be arrested, detained, prosecuted or convicted outside cases and
rules provided by the law."
Paragraph 1, Article 23 of the 2011 Constitution
The existence of political
parties, trade unions and an
active and pluralistic political
life does not date back to
three or four decades, quite the
contrary. It dates back to the
beginning of last century. Morocco
counts more than 36 political
parties of all tendencies: right-
wing, centre, left-wing, Islamist
parties in addition to many trade
A period of sixty years or more
separates some old parties from
those which were formed later.
This applies to the Moroccan
Communist Party (MCP) founded
in 1943, the Istiqlal Party
(IP) created in 1944 and the
Democratic Party for Independence
(DPI) appeared in 1946. A new
era starts in Morocco with the
beginning of the consensual
alternation government experience
that was committed in 1997. On
25 November 2011, the Party of
Justice and Development (PJD) had won parliamentary elections by getting 107
seats in the 395 that make up the House of Representatives. Thus, the actual
Moroccan government is composed of the PJD, Istiqlal, PPS and MP.
Article 7 of the 2011 Constitution stipulates that “Political parties work
on surrounding and presenting a political education to citizens, promoting
their participation in national life and managing public affairs. They
contribute in expressing the will of electors and participate in exercising
the power based on pluralism and alternation through democratic tools, in
an atmosphere of constitutional institutions. Their establishment and the
practice of their activities are free, in conformity with the Constitution
The considerable democratic progress which is taking place in Morocco along with
the economic reform process which has been carried out during the last years have
allowed the media to play an increasingly prominent role.
The Moroccan media landscape manifests a true dynamism in both the printed press
and audiovisual media. We cannot talk about the Moroccan media landscape without
mentioning the Maghreb Arab Press Agency whose human resources, logistics and
network of offices, inside the country and abroad, allow the collection and diffusion of
a considerable mass of information.
Known for its diversity, the Moroccan print media have witnessed, these last
years, a deep mutation marked by the renewal and modernization of its equipment
(computerization, color paper, etc...), the hiring of young executives, the gradual
revamping of its articles and design and the increase of the number of published
pages. The electronic version of the printed press takes various forms: the publication
o f f o r e i g n t i t l e s ; t h e printed version of which
is also available in the Moroccan market;
t h e p u b l i c a t i o n of the first page
of the national newspapers and
magazines on their websites
s o a s n o t t o c o m p e t e w i t h
t h e i r p r i n t e d issues and finally
the publication of the electronic
T h e N a t i o n a l U n i o n o f t h e
Moroccan Press (S.N.P.M.) was set
up in January 1963, as an autonomous
professional association with the aim of defending
the profession and the code of ethics.
"Freedom of the press is guaranteed and cannot be limited by any prior form of
Paragraph 1, Article 28 of the 2011 Constitution
The kingdom of Morocco holds a unique position in the history of colonization, as
well as in the decolonization process, that deviates from the usual model that applies
to other countries. Indeed, due to its geographical situation at the gateway of Africa
and the junction of the Mediterranean Sea and the Atlantic Ocean, Morocco was, for
centuries, targeted by colonial ambitions, mainly European.
These started in the second half of the XIX Century with the occupation by Spain, in
1884, of a settlement in the far south of the country, called villa Cisneros (Dakhla),
followed by the conclusion by European powers of secret agreements dividing
Morocco into zones of influence and occupation.
Hence, Morocco turned out, in 1912, divided into several zones of occupation. Forty-
four years later, Morocco started to recover its territorial integrity gradually and
through negotiated international agreements. In 1956, France and Spain retroceded
the central and northern zones to Morocco; the international zone of Tangier was also
retroceded to Moroccan.
Ever since, Morocco and Spain decided to adopt a policy of consultation and
negotiation as a favourite means of resolving the territorial dispute. This resolute
policy of peacefully settling disputes gave birth to the 1958 Agreement by which the
territory of Tarfaya was retroceded to Morocco, the 1969 Agreement that consecrated
the return of the territory of
Sidi Ifni, Madrid A g r e e m e n t
of 1975 that marked the
end of Spanish presence in
the Moroccan Sahara.
As for the human and humanitarian dimension of this territorial dispute, the National
Human Rights Council (CNDH), which became a Constitutional Body, finalizing the
establishment process of its regional structures, has installed two Commissions in the
Sahara, in Laâyoune and in Dakhla. These Commissions are stemmed from the local
civil society and from NGOs involved in the promotion of the human rights. They enjoy
genuine powers in terms of early-warnings, investigation and mediation.
In a bid to put an end to the longstanding dispute, the Kingdom of Morocco presented,
on March 14th, 2007, a proposal to grant substantial autonomy to the Sahara
Southern Provinces. The initiative was widely praised and enjoyed wide international
support. Morocco presented a courageous autonomy initiative which is consistent with
global standards and international legality, and which takes into account the region’s
social and cultural specificities.
The autonomy statute is based on the transfer of substantial prerogatives that allow
the population run their own affairs democratically, in the framework of the national
The Moroccan Initiative comes in response to the wish expressed by the international
community to break the impasse and to foster dialogue and help initiate negotiations.
The Initiative draws inspiration from the relevant proposals of the United Nations
Organisation, and from the constitutional provisions in force in countries that
are geographically and culturally close to Morocco. It is based on internationally
recognised norms and standards.
Thus, the broad lines of the autonomy statute proposal submitted to
the United Nations Organisation are as follows:
• a response to the international community wish;
• a break of the current stalemate;
• fostering dialogue and help to initiate negotiations;
• to reach a realistic and practical compromise solution;
• to foster a final, mutually acceptable political solution;
• to enable the population of the Sahara to run their own affairs themselves and democratically;
• to preserve the Kingdom’s sovereignty, national unity and territorial integrity;
• to give chance to boosting the Maghreb construction;
• to fulfil the aspirations of the Maghreb peoples for unity, stability, security, progress and democracy;
• to guard against the threat of terrorism and all sorts of trafficking.
• The Moroccan proposal takes into account:
• the social and cultural specificities of the region;
• the international autonomy standards;
• the dynamic process of consultation and democratic participation.
• It provides the region with :
• its own legislative, executive and judiciary bodies;
• coordination mechanisms between regional and national institutions;
• arbitration bodies to resolve possible disputes over jurisdiction
• Confidence Building Measures.
“The tabling of the pertinent initiative designed to give the Moroccan Sahara au-
tonomous status within the framework of the Kingdom’s sovereignty, national
unity and territorial integrity was a watershed in the search for a final settlement
to this regional artificial dispute, all the more so as the initiative is consistent
with international legitimacy, grants all the region’s populations extensive man-
agement of their local affairs and respects the said populations’ specific cultur-
Speech of His Majesty the King Mohammed VI to the Moroccan Nation on No-
vember 6th, 2012
The Kingdom of Morocco has opted, for
several decades, in favour of a process
of building a democratic State based
on the principles of good governance
and the protection of the freedom and
dignity of citizens. It has made of politi-
cal openness and human development
two complementary pillars for building a
democratic, developed and homogene-
In this context and with the advent of His
Majesty King Mohammed VI on the Throne, on July 30th, 1999, the Kingdom of Morocco
has experienced a movement of unprecedented reforms in political, social and economic
areas. From Family Code reform, which revolutionized women status and condition in Mo-
rocco, to the launch of the National Initiative for Human Development (NIHD) and justice
reform, the major projects of the Kingdom of Morocco have recently culminated with the
reform of the Moroccan Constitution.
Morocco has experienced in 1997, a peaceful government alternation within its institutions
and political traditions. In addition, Morocco has been engaged, for more than a decade,
in a raft of major changes, considerable political openness, sustained economic develop-
ment and significant social progress. Thus, the major projects of the Kingdom have cul-
minated in the adoption and institutionalization of a new reform of the Moroccan Constitu-
“Morocco’s unity, forged by the convergence of its Arabo-Islamic, Amazigh and
Saharan-Hassani components, is nourished and enriched by its African, Anda-
lusian, Hebrew and Mediterranean tributaries.”
Paragraph 2 of the Preamble of the 2011 Constitution
Constitutional and Institutional Reforms
Since its independence in 1956, Mo-
rocco has had six constitutions prom-
ulgated respectively in 1962, 1970,
1972, 1992, 1996 and 2011. In addi-
tion to these six different constitutional
texts, Morocco revised three of its
constitutional texts namely those of
1972, 1992 and 1996. However, the
new constitution of 2011 is considered
as a suitable tool initiating the Moroccan alternative toward democracy. For good rea-
sons, the fundamental features of this new text trace the following contours:
• Consistency and modernity that rely as much on the form than on the level of the
modern formulation of the preamble, integrated part of the constitutional text;
• Inclusive, transparent and democratic methodology (constitution made by the
Moroccans for all Moroccan);
• Consecration of the foundations of the Moroccan plural identity;
• Linguistic pact rebased on the assumed pluralism;
• True citizen chart of rights and freedoms rooted on the universal standards of
• Strengthening the notion of gender equality by the consecration of parity;
• Primacy of the national sovereignty and supremacy of the constitution;
• Separation of power depending on a constitutional monarchy regime, democratic,
parliamentary and social framework;
• The judicial authority enjoys the status of independent authority, which is
responsible for protecting the rights and ensure law respect;
• Constitutionalizing a participative and citizen democracy;
• Constitutionalizing the fundamental principals in terms of good governance, ethical
standards of the public life and the rule of economic law;
• Constitutionalizing the territorial democracy (advanced regionalization).
"By launching today the work of constitutional reform, we embark on a ma-
jor phase in the process of consolidation of our model of democracy and
Speech of His Majesty the King Mohammed VI to the Moroccan Nation on
March 9th, 2011
The 2011 Constitution of the Kingdom of Mo-
rocco paves the way for an advanced region-
alization as well as a redistributing of powers
between constitutional institutions. It enshrines
a country with united regions, based on a dem-
ocratic reorganization of powers between the
State and the regions.
• The basic principles underlying
the Moroccan regionalization
system are as follows :
• National, local and regional unity,
balance, solidarity and democratic
• Election of regional councils by direct
suffrage, right of petition;
• Principles of self-management and subsidiarity ;
• Transferring the executive power of these councils to their presidents ;
• The regional Council will serve as a college for election to the House of Councillors.
• Constitutional basis for a new local and regional setup in the Kingdom, con-
ducive to :
• Substantial devolution of powers from the central authority to the regions ;
• Several forms of partnership and contractual relationships between the State and the regions,
and between local governments;
• Development and devolution of central powers.
• Creation of a regional equalization fund and of a fund for the social overhaul-
ing of regions.
• Relationship between office-holding, public office and accountability.
• Constitutionalizing the principle of the balance of public finances.
• Confirming the basic principles of social market economy and economic rule
of law :
• The right to property, free enterprise and free competition;
• The prohibition of conflicts of interest, of insider trading and of practices that are contrary to
the principles of free and fair competition in economic relations.
"The territorial organization of the kingdom is decentralized. It is based on an
Advanced Regionalisation ".
Paragraph 4, Article 1 of the 2011 Constitution
“The new Maghreb order I called for last year has today,
more than ever, become an urgent necessity. It needs to
be given concrete substance to turn it into a reality so that
we may build a common Maghreb. It is therefore impera-
tive that the five Maghreb countries pledge to overcome
the current state of inertia which puts the future of the
Arab Maghreb Union at risk.
This Union is already the least developed regional integra-
tion bloc in Africa. It means we have to work earnestly and
in good faith to develop mechanisms that are conducive to
solidarity and integration in order to fulfil the aspirations of our peoples, enable them
to achieve their full potential and put their skills and qualifications to good use, ensure
the free movement of people, goods, services and capital, promote growth, create
wealth and guarantee our collective security”.
Speech of His Majesty the King Mohammed VI to the Moroccan Nation on No-
vember 6th, 2012.
When announcing the reforms, His Majesty Mohammad VI indi-
“I sought to reflect the general will of the Nation, rather than im-
pose legislation. The reform did not represent a victory for one
side or the other”.
According to the Moroccan law, the family code is called “Mu-
dawana”. It concerns all issues related to the family. Originally
based on the Maliki School of the Sunna Islamic jurisprudence,
the Mudawana was codified after the Kingdom of Morocco recov-
ered its independence.
The recent reforms of the Mudawana, approved by the Parlia-
ment in 2004 and praised by human rights activists for its measures to address wom-
en’s rights and gender equality within an Islamic legal framework, stipulates that both
spouses share responsibility for the family; that the right to petition for divorce belongs
to both men and women; and that the Children’s rights are protected according to the
international conventions signed by the Kingdom of Morocco.
National Council for Human Rights
The National Council for Human Rights (CNDH) replaced the
Human Rights Advisory Council which was created in 1990.
The Royal Decree instituting the CNDH indicates that its
objective is to “consolidate the independence of the insti-
tution in charge of monitoring human rights situation in the
kingdom, by relying on pluralistic and rationalized com-
position. The primary mission of the CNDH is to monitor
and assess the human rights situation and enrich rights for
The Decree stipulates further that “in order to successfully com- p l e t e
its actions, the new organ is entitled to examine any violations or alleged violations of
human rights and to launch the appropriate inquiries, based on existing testimonies,
in order to find the truth.” It will also “sound the alarm in any situations of tension that
would lead to human rights abuses, and to control the conditions of detention in the
country’s prisons.” Another mission of the CNDH is to help in the monitoring of elec-
tions and to “ensure that the existing rules and legislation are consistent with interna-
tional treaties on human rights and the international humanitarian law.”
Established in 2001 by Royal Decree, the Ombudsman Office (former Office of Griev-
ances – Diwan Al Madhalim), started its operations in April
2004. It has been enthusiastically welcomed by Moroccan
political circles as well as Human Rights organizations.
Besides mediation and conciliation, this Institution, very
recently reformed and called “The Mediator”, has also the
power to conduct inquiries and investigations.
It is empowered to initiate disciplinary proceedings or act
as public prosecutor and also to make recommendations
concerning legal help, particularly for the poorest and
those in precarious situation. The institution is created
to strengthen the principles of good governance in pub-
lic administration, the values of transparency and ethical
standards, and to meet the requirements for improving the
performance of authorities and their modernization.
The National Human Development Initia-
tive (INDH) is a program launched in 2005
by King Mohammed VI of Morocco with the
objective of ensuring a better distribution of
the fruits of growth and to improve the liv-
ing conditions of citizens.
The program has an important budget and is distributed equally between two country-
wide programs called: "transversal program" and "program against precarious living
conditions"; as well as two geographically targeted programs, namely an urban and
a rural program. For the urban program, committees at the local level identified 264
urban neighborhoods with the greatest needs in 30 cities that would benefit from the
initiative. The rural program targets 348 rural zones.
National Human Development Initiative
The 2011 Moroccan Constitution awarded the Cen-
tral Agency for the Prevention of Corruption (ICPC) a
new status for the national-level prevention and fight
against corruption. With a new priority status, the ICPC
is gearing up for a major surge in order to bolster the campaign against corruption in
Morocco. This allows the ICPC to consolidate its missions to prevent corruption. The
ICPC is now able to assign and launch major investigations dealing with various forms
This new status gives also the ICPC the prerogative of horizontal framework of efforts
in order to both prevent and fight against corruption through a national strategy in con-
junction with other law enforcement agencies. The Department of Justice in Morocco
has already agreed to the creation of Chambers specializing in financial crimes at
Morocco's four Courts of Appeal. The ICPC hopes to capitalize on this initiative. The
ICPC has developed a communications strategy to raise awareness of the harmful ef-
fects of corruption in explaining its different forms, its causes and consequences.
Central Agency for the Prevention of
Officially founded on October 17, 2001, under a Royal
decree, the Royal Institute of the Amazigh Culture (IR-
CAM) is an academic Institute of the Moroccan Gov-
ernment. It is in charge of the development and the
promotion of the Amazigh language and culture and
of the development of Amazigh language courses for
Morocco's public schools.
The Institute offers advice to the Moroccan king and
Government about the measures that would help
d e - velop and promote the Amazigh language and culture,
especially within the educational system.
Royal Institute of the Amazigh Culture
The Royal Advisory Council for Saharan Affairs (CORCAS) was created, in March
2006, by a Royal Decree, which stipulates that the CORCAS is asked to assist in the
issues relating to the defense of the Kingdom’s territorial integrity and national unity,
the promotion of social and economic development of the southern provinces and the
preservation of their cultural identity.
The Council shall render advisory opinions
on general or special issues also relating to
human, economic and social development
of the southern provinces and carry out mis-
sions entrusted regarding these fields.
The CORCAS also issues proposals related
to any measure that allows the coming back
and integration within the clement and merci-
ful homeland of all Moroccans coming from the
southern provinces along with initiatives to be
carried out in the southern provinces and other regions of the Kingdom to defend the
country’s territorial integrity and national unity and consolidate national solidarity.
RoyalAdvisory Council for SaharanAffairs
Embassy of the Kingdom of Morocco
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