Benkirane: Morocco Ruling Party No Longer Needed in Govt. after Voting for Controversial Law

Monday, 22 July, 2019 - 09:30
Rabat - Asharq Al-Awsat

Former Secretary General of Morocco’s Justice and Development Party (JDP) Abdelilah Benkirane attacked the party’s general secretariat, which called on its deputies to vote for Law 17.51 on the system of education and training and scientific research, but abstain from voting on two controversial articles.

“After passing this law, you no longer have a reason to remain in this government because people no longer view you as a legitimate party,” the former premier said, in an implicit call for the ruling party to leave the government of Saadeddine Othmani, who is also the JDP secretary general.

On a video released Saturday night, Benkirane said that the law goes “against the people’s interest and is just a gift to followers of the colonial influence in Morocco.”

He said the JDP general secretariat’s decision to vote for the law has given a chance for the party’s enemies to attack it.

Benkirane added that the JDP is in a “very bad position” because “the principles of our party have been struck at the core and time will prove that.”

He deemed the vote for the law the first serious mistake committed since “we took office in 2011,” stressing that the struggle of successive generations in Morocco “will be lost now.”

However, Benkirane affirmed that Morocco and the Moroccan people "will not give up the Arabic language.”

The former premier said losing in the upcoming elections does not concern him, adding that what matters is not allowing the law to pass.

The Moroccan official confirmed that he considered resigning from the party.

“When I learned of the decision, I thought a lot about leaving the party, because I no longer feel that I am honored to belong to a party whose secretary general is taking this decision.”

Article 2 of the Education Reform Act provides for “the adoption of linguistic rotation, by teaching certain scientific and technical subjects, or parts of certain articles in a language or in foreign languages”.

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