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Mohammed VI appoints Aziz Akhannouch as head of the Moroccan government




After the victory of his party in the legislative elections, Aziz Akhannouch must now negotiate to build his coalition (photo: RNI)
After the victory of his party in the legislative elections, Aziz Akhannouch must now negotiate to build his coalition (photo: RNI)
MOROCCO. As a logical and constitutional consequence of the victory of the National Rally of Independents (RNI) in the Moroccan legislative elections, King Mohammed VI designated, on Friday 10 September 2021, the leader of this party, Aziz Akhannouch, to form the future government.

The RNI won 102 of the 395 seats, inflicting, on Wednesday 8 September 2021, a very severe defeat on the Justice and Development Party (PJD - moderate Islamist), which dominated Moroccan politics for a decade and now has only thirteen seats. Close to the Palace, the liberal party chaired by Aziz Akhannouch since October 2016 is experienced in the exercise of power. Created in 1978 by Ahmed Osman, Hassan II's brother-in-law, the party with the dove has participated in all government coalitions for twenty-three years (except for a short period between 2012 and 2013). Sixty years old and a billionaire, the boss of the Akwa holding (60 companies in various fields including hydrocarbons and the press) was even Minister of Agriculture, Maritime Fishing, Rural Development and Water and Forests in the previous government, since 2007.

The search for a coalition

The RNI will however have to find allies, probably from the Authenticity and Modernity Party (PAM), also liberal, which came second in the election with 86 seats. Or the Istiqlal party (centre-right), third (81 seats), which would offer 270 deputies, thus a majority greater than two-thirds in the House of Representatives. Other combinations remain possible, however, by replacing the PAM with the Socialist Union of Popular Forces (USFP - 35 seats), which would give it a comfortable majority. All the more so if other parties with more modest results add their deputies.

As negotiations begin, the new head of the executive has indicated that he wants to form a "coherent, homogeneous majority with convergent programmes. During the electoral campaign, the RNI put forward five commitments that should serve as a roadmap during its mandate: creation of a minimum old age pension (1,000 dirhams - €94 - per month), generalisation of social security to all employees, extension of the compulsory health insurance scheme (AMO) to all Moroccans (the state will pay the contribution for the poorest), launch of a disability plan, family allowances for each child (birth bonus of 2,000 dirhams and 300 dirhams per month for each child).

 

Eric Apim


Monday, September 13th 2021



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