Morocco: Benkirane's New Government Program for Democracy
By Morocco News Agency Staff
Rabat, Morocco --- January 04, 2012 ... As a quintessential element of their coalition forming, the General Secretaries of the four parties in Morocco, Abdelilah Benkirane, Abbas El Fassi, Mohand Laenser and Nabil Benabdallah, jointly signed on December 16, 2011, a landmark document in the history of Moroccan politics: “The Charter of the Majority”.
The Charter is a contractual document that defines the scope of the joint action of the coalition’s partners and the basic principles of their government’s democratic program. With the swearing in of the new government by King Mohammed VI on January 3, 2012, the Charter of the Majority becomes a legal document of immense importance for it outlines and articulates the Benkirane government’s program and modus operandi.
The Charter of the Majority affirms that the new coalition government in Morocco is “committed to serving the supreme interests of the nation and to defending its sovereignty, territorial integrity and unity of its people within the framework of respect for the sacred and immutable values of the nation and in accordance with the Constitution.”
To realize these objectives, the coalition irrevocably adopted four fundamental principles of government work: “joint action, efficiency in execution, transparency in management, and solidarity of responsibility.”
The Charter stipulates further that coalition members “are committed to work in a harmonious and united way” in order to “fully assume the government’s constitutional responsibility and solidarity, as well as the political management of public affairs.”
The Benkirane government will serve “while ensuring the implementation of the provisions of the new Constitution, in order to carry out more reforms and build the rule of law, freedom, justice and solidarity between the different components of the Moroccan people and different regions of the Kingdom.”
The Charter asserts that a major objective of the government is to restore the morality in political work and trust in public life by restoring faith and trust in the country’s institutions.
Toward this end, the government will fight resolutely “illegal practices and the cash economy in all areas related to the rights, dignity and freedom of citizens.”
The coalition is also committed “to promote its work within the legislative institutions and the government in order to contribute to the development and implementation of public policies while defending them with the seriousness and credibility required.”
The new government of Morocco is also “committed to improving institutional performance and policy in order to move forward in the practicing of democracy and good governance,” as well as “strengthen the momentum of reforms contained in the new Basic Law.”
Echoing the public’s yearning for Benkirane to be an all-Moroccan national leader practicing a “participatory approach” to governance - the Charter of the Majority stresses the coalition commitment to helping the opposition to play its role in the parliamentary system.
The Charter stipulates that the government “will work in cooperation and dialogue with the opposition in order to enable it to fulfill its the opposition’s constitutional and political obligations.” As well, the government “will engage in dialogue with all social-political forces in the nation in accordance with a dedicated approach to the consolidation of participatory democracy and the expansion of solidarity and national reconciliation.”
The government is dedicated to enhancing plurality and respecting differences of opinion.
Regarding the mechanism for implementing the Charter, the coalition parties in Morocco agreed to transform and up-grade the eight-member high-level high-power commission that originally formulated the Charter. The joint presidency of the governing coalition will remain an eight-member group except that it will now be comprised of the General Secretaries of the four parties and four senior members of the parties’ leadership selected by the General Secretaries.
The coalition leaders agreed that the presidency of the coalition would meet frequently with the Prime Minister acting as chairman. The primary role of the presidency of the coalition is “to monitor and evaluate the progress and performance of the majority, to examine all issues relating to the coalition, and to ensure cohesion and integration of government action and public policy.”
The Charter of the Majority commits the new government “to enshrine the democratic choice by expanding the space for freedoms and citizen participation, encouraging entrepreneurship, supporting mechanisms to ensure equal opportunities in society, by consolidating the role of women on the basis of equality, promoting youth participation in institutional life, as well as expanding media freedom, responsibility and creativity.”
The new coalition government in Morocco will publish an annual report to inform citizens of the progress carried out by the government and its future prospects.
The coalition leaders thus present all Moroccans with a “contractual document” binding the government and the coalition to a self-imposed modus operandi and road map.
Benkirane and his partners are convinced that they are inaugurating a new era in the management of public affairs in Morocco in the spirit of the new Constitution and the King’s reforms process.
At stake is the country’s future.