Morocco reacts to historic constitutional reform

Now Reading:

Morocco reacts to historic constitutional reform

Text size Aa Aa

In Morocco a spontaneous outpouring of celebrations spread throughout the country after King Mohammed VI promised a new democratic constitution.

The celebrations are in direct contrast to the protests in the kingdom which were part of the Arab Spring movement.

Now a reformed constitution will shift some powers to government and hold officials more accountable.

The reformed constitution which will go to a referendum on July 1st will recognise Tamazight as an official language. It is the original language of North Africa before Arabs conquered it in the 7th century to spread Islam.

The King has effectively ended his and the Arab world’s oldest dynasty’s hold on absolute power to a directly elected parliament.

“The Constitution establishes a Prime Minister who will come from the winning party, who will lead the government, and executive power will be held by the party that has a parliamentary majority following direct elections,” he said speaking in a televised address.

Despite the celebrations the February 20 Movement, which led the initial demonstrations in Morocco said it still planned to protest on Sunday.

Under the new constitution the King will retain his grip on security, the army and religion and pick the prime minister.

One activist said the movement is demanding, “a constitution that widens the scope for public freedoms.”