Civil society and the disbursement of public money

I also followed the Moroccans with surprise and great concern over the statements of Mr. Justice Minister Abdellatif Wehbe, either in parliament or during his passage on Channel One, his intention to introduce amendments to the Code of Criminal Procedure that would prevent civil society associations from filing complaints against elected officials accused of corruption and waste of public money, and made the right of succession exclusively in the hands of the Ministry of Home Affairs.

We all agree, and certainly the Minister of Justice himself, that the cost of corruption in Morocco is very high, and it is indeed seen as one of the obstacles to promoting the country’s ranking by the Human Development Index. Everyone knows that these costs are estimated at about 5 percent of the gross domestic product, which is equivalent to 50 billion dirhams annually, in addition to the cost of bribery and corruption in public transactions, which is estimated at about 27 billion dirhams.

We firmly believe that continued normalization with corruption and impunity poses a real danger to economic and social conditions, undermines the rule of law and justice, contributes to the monopoly of wealth by a limited group and creates spatial and social inequalities, and consequently leads to a loss of confidence in political action and in institutions on the one hand Citizens and citizens.

In view of all this, we believe that what the Honorable Minister of Justice intends to do; A wrong decision and contrary to the right of civic organizations to monitor and report cases of waste of public money. It is rather the right of associations, but rather their duty to take care of public money and thus lodge complaints. This is a right that can not be violated. Rather, it is the government’s duty to find ways to activate it.

Based on our follow-up to what is going on within Moroccan society, we note the centrality that this subject occupies in the success of the workshops of socio-economic reforms, which are considered to be the center of the mill in the success and download of the foundations. of the new development model. If we remember the main demands raised by the slogans of the protest movements in Morocco, especially the February 20 movement, the election programs of a number of political parties now participating in the government and successive royal speeches, we will find that they have all placed the fight against corruption, the rule of law and the creation of public life at the heart of their demands. In addition, one of the most important recommendations of the report of the Equality and Reconciliation Commission, which was unanimously approved by Moroccans, is the adoption of the “principle of non-impunity”, which indicates that there is no more room for tolerance of human rights violators in the general and financial crimes in particular, with the rule of penalties imposed by law.

Returning to the principle of participatory democracy endorsed by the Moroccan Constitution of 2011, which gave civil society a privileged position to contribute to the preparation of public policies, and thus pressured the government to take firm action, in in the light of the reports of the Supreme Court. Board of Accounts and other supervisory bodies, in order to hold accountable and follow up spoilers in various departments And break with all policies that drain the state budget and help civil servants to become illegally rich and get rich for no reason. We conclude that the proposed amendments to the Criminal Procedure Act deviate from the wording and spirit of the Constitution. So that its first chapter considers citizenship and participatory democracy as one of the pillars of the constitutional system of the kingdom, and chapter 12 states that “associations interested in public affairs and non-governmental organizations contribute within the framework of participatory democracy in the preparation of decisions and projects for elected institutions and public authorities, as well as in their activation and evaluation. ”

And instead of the Minister’s thinking focused on creating ways and methods through which the working mechanisms of civil society can be supported, developed and improved in order to perform its role in the best way, such as preparing the laws that regulate it so that it can fulfill its constitutional role. and provide facilities for the establishment of non-governmental organizations, and assist in the development of media independence so that they can. providing information and expertise to associations and supporting training programs for them, and it is even possible to include a set of precautions and conditions to be complied with by associations that lodge complaints with the courts, and ensure that these are not Impossible conditions is not. It does not work to limit the possibility of litigation for civil society and to play its part in combating corruption and creating public life. We believe that this behavior, insofar as it reflects a desire to silence voices calling for the creation of public life, sends it messages of a lack of accountability, impunity and failure to activate a basic principle in democracy , such as linking responsibility to liability.

On this basis, we believe that it is no longer acceptable for governments to confront the popular will in the fight against administrative or financial corruption. The government is now obliged to respond to the demands of female citizens who are tired of policies indulgent with spoilers and perpetrators of what can be classified as economic crimes, and which cause financial scandals in a number of administrations, public institutions and local groups , which was addressed in the reports of the Supreme Board of Accounts, and the reports of other bodies.

The success of the current government depends on combating corruption, stopping the waste of public money, curbing the rentier economy, redistributing wealth in a fair way, combating tax evasion, linking responsibility to liability, and the punishment of all those convicted of financial crimes, and this will only be done in cooperation with civil society within the framework of a participatory approach that takes into account the opinions and suggestions of citizens.

It is also no longer acceptable to forgive or tolerate spoilers, based on the constitutional principle of “linking responsibility to liability,” and imprisonment alone is not sufficient, but must be accompanied by provisions accompanied by hasty critics who recovery of plundered public funds required. wherever they are found and in the name of those who are registered with an account, the benefits.

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