Morocco: from ‚Arab Spring‘ to democratic governance?
German Development Institute / Deutsches Institut für Entwicklungspolitik (DIE)
Five years after the upheavals, Morocco seems on a promising track, as the new constitution adopted per referendum in 2011 foresees comprehensive reforms for democratization and participation as well as more transparent and efficient governance. Among the refoms announced, the ones on decentralization and on access to information play a key role for a potential democratization of the country. The decentralization reform was to enforce local governments and delegate responsibilities to the recently elected regional representatives. The law for the right of access to information is a key element for claiming other rights and enabling press freedom. However, local and international observers state that many of these promises either remain paper tigers or are implemented in a very restrictive way. What is the current status of these reforms and what are the prospects for the country? How does the unstable situation in other countries of the region influence Morocco’s political development? And how do members of the very active civil society perceive the current situation?
Two experts on the country discussed the state of the reforms:
- Annabelle Houdret, German Development Institute / Deutsches Institut für Entwicklungspolitik (DIE) gave a short overview on the political situation after 2011 and presented her findings on the implementation of the decentralization reform.
- Azeddine Akesbi (former secretary general and current member of Transparency Maroc national council and visiting-researcher at the DIE) presented key socio-economic data on the country and then explained the relevance of access to information for socio-political change, including his recent findings on the implementation of the respective law and the social mobilization around its adoption in Morocco.
A public debate followed the two presentations. Markus Loewe (DIE) moderated the event.