Morocco: Royal speech institutes a new social contract – Mustapha Merizek
As was expected, the king’s speech reaffirmed the right to health and explicitly called to continue supporting health protection and safety of citizens, to face the unprecedented global crisis, says sociology professor Mustapha Merizek in a column.
The King underlined that the current situation requires national mobilization and citizenship responsibility to rise to the challenge and to be mindful of people’s concerns and aspirations, in order to fulfill their requirements and meet their needs in terms of health, treatment and prevention.
In his speech, the King made an accurate assessment of the socio-economic situation in the country, stressing the need to support the productive sectors, especially small and medium-sized enterprises, which have been badly affected by the coronavirus health crisis, the sociologist wrote.
The Sovereign also highlighted the role of the strategic investment fund, which was set up to play a pivotal role in promoting investment and boosting national economy and underlined the special importance that needs to be given to agriculture and rural development under the economic recovery plan.
King Mohammed VI insisted that in the current circumstances, support must be given to the highly important sector of agriculture in order to support rural development, assert the right to use communal agricultural land, and implement all farming and investment strategic projects for the benefit of investors and rights holders, the sociologist recalled, noting that these measures would contribute to the development of the social field, improve the living conditions of citizens, men and women, and institute the right to social coverage.
In his speech, the Sovereign also stressed the need to review the criteria and procedures for appointments to senior positions, the columnist wrote, noting that the current procedures stand in the way of national competencies.
Overall, the king’s speech came to reaffirm the need to take a new package of measures to support the development of rural Morocco (residents of the mountains, oases, steppes, plains…), the inhabitants of large cities, and the whole population, to support the economy, revive the labor market, institute health coverage, and generalize family allowances, the columnist stated. And, as put by the Sovereign, the implementation of all these measures and the success of the economic stimulus plan, within the framework of a new social contract, require a real change in mind-set as well as improvement in the performance of public institutions.