King Mohammed VI Urges Benkirane to form Government

Two senior Advisors to King Mohammed VI met Abdelilah Benkirane at the headquarters of the Head of the Government’s office where they expressed the concern of the sovereign regarding the delay in forming the new government.

The Advisors, Abdellatif Mennouni and Omar Kabbage, were sent to visit Benkirane upon directives from King Mohammed VI to express that the King urges the formation of a new government as soon as possible, Morocco’s news agency said quoting a statement of the Royal office.

“During the same meeting which took place at the Head of Government’s office, the Advisors to the King expressed to Abdelilah Benkirane the expectations of HM the King and all Moroccans concerning the formation of a new government,” says the statement.

Benkirane was designated by the Sovereign as Head of Government on October 10, after his party emerged victorious, albeit with small margin, in the October 7th legislative elections.

Benkirane has led consultations with several political parties but has so far failed to record any breakthrough as to the formation of a coalition cabinet, a stalemate that puts the country on the verge of a political crisis.

The consultations have also been overshadowed by a national and international context marked notably by the organization of the UN Climate Summit (November 7-18) and the preparations of a diplomatic and economic offensive in Africa in tandem with Morocco’s effort to reintegrate the African Union, events from which Benkirane has been absent.

The staggering formation of a government was hinted at with a serious tone by King Mohammed VI, in his speech on the occasion of the Green March, when he said that “the future cabinet should not be the result of calculations aimed at fulfilling political parties’ wishes, based on electoral arithmetic, as if there were spoils to be shared out.” “The government should involve an efficient, coherent structuring effort, consonant with programs and priorities,” the King had said.

With 125 seats in Parliament, the PJD finds itself on an uphill battle to form a government in a stratified political landscape in which its arch rival the PAM has won 102 seats.

The Moroccan constitution does not specify the measures to be taken in case the party that won most seats fails to form a government. Several scenarios are on the table including the intervention of the Monarchy as a supreme referee between the political parties by either interceding to convince the leader of the Rally of Independents which came in 4th in the elections and Benkirane to compromise or by designating a less controversial figure within the PJD to lead consultations.

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