A new Moroccan political party close to King Mohammed looks set to triumph in local elections.
With the majority of votes now counted, the Authenticity and Modernity Party, created by Fouad Ali El Himma, a close adviser to the King, has won the most number of seats, ahead of the ruling Independence Party. Ali El Himma set up the party to bolster support for reformist policies, and indirectly King Mohammed himself. This in the face of the growing popularity of the moderate Islamist Justice and Development Party, and widespread disillusionment with established parties. Morocco suffers from under-investment in its infrastructure and high unemployment. Proportional representation and a strong tendency to vote on lines of tribal loyalty mean that control of local councils is almost invariably by coalition government.