Saturday, June 18, 2011

Morocco: King Mohammed VI Sends 'Landmark Constitutional Changes' to Moroccan People for a Vote

SOURCE Moroccan American Center for Policy

In an address to the people of Morocco this evening, His Majesty King Mohammed VI outlined bold Constitutional amendments that establish the Moroccan Kingdom as a constitutional monarchy and a parliamentary system with sovereignty vested in the people. The reforms strengthen Morocco's governing institutions—in particular a Prime Minister as Head of Government, Parliament, and an independent Judiciary. In keeping with King Mohammed VI's promise, the people of Morocco will "have the final say" in a national referendum set for July 1.

Highlights of the new Constitutional amendments and initiatives:

  • Changes will bring about a constitutional monarchy with a parliamentary system of government with sovereignty vested in the people.
  • The Head of Government will be a Prime Minister appointed from the party that wins the general election, with the power to propose and dismiss cabinet members, and propose senior government officials and Ambassadors.
  • It will establish an independent Judiciary, and guarantee freedom from illegal searches or detention, privacy for communications, and the right to trial and a lawyer for anyone arrested by the authorities.
  • A robust regionalization initiative will transfers power from central government authorities to elected local and regional officials directly accountable to citizens.
  • Equality of all citizens regardless of sex, origin, language, religion, or creed is guaranteed.
  • Amazigh, for the first time, will be recognized as an official language following Arabic, the traditional official language.
  • Institutions will be strengthened to promote good governance, human rights, and protection of freedoms.
  • Mechanisms to ensure oversight and accountability in the exercise of power in public office will be established.
  • The national referendum to approve the amendments will be held on July 1st.
These latest reforms build on Morocco's efforts over the past two decades to empower people politically, socially, and economically—through holding free and fair elections, building a vibrant civil society, improving women's rights, raising living standards, and safeguarding human rights.

For the Full Text of His Majesty King Mohammed VI's June 17th speech, go to: