King Mohammed VI Sends Message to Participants in 3rd Parliamentary Forum

Rabat – King Mohammed VI sent a message to the third parliamentary forum on social justice, which opened Monday in Rabat, under the theme “The challenges of social and spatial justice and the components of the new development model.”Here follows the full text of the message read out by the King’s advisor Abdellatif Menouni:“Praise be to God,May peace and blessings be upon the Prophet, His Kith and Kin Ladies and Gentlemen,It gives me great pleasure to send you this message at the opening of the third session of your Parliamentary Forum. Since I ascended the throne of my glorious ancestors, I have taken a keen interest in social justice issues and have, therefore, always granted your Forum my patronage.I commend you on choosing “the desired development model and the stakes of social and inter-regional justice” as the theme for this session. Your choice reflects a keen awareness of this topical subject which involves many interrelated issues that call for an innovative, holistic approach. The aim, ultimately, is to find practical, applicable solutions to citizens’ real and pressing problems and to achieve balanced, equitable development for all, in a serene, stable environment.As I have pointed out, what we need to do today is to solve problems and refrain from stopping at the diagnosis phase, however important it may be.Ladies and Gentlemen,In my last address to Parliament, I mentioned the factors hindering our development model and called for it to be revisited, using a collective approach.It has become clear that our model, which contributed to countless tangible economic and social achievements, is no longer able to respond to citizens’ growing demands and needs, nor can it reduce social and inter-regional disparities. It cannot, therefore, help achieve social justice.By calling for a review of that model, we are seeking more than just isolated sectoral reforms, or a reshuffle of certain economic projects and social programs.In fact, we are aiming for an integrated vision to shape not only a model for the achievement of the country’s political, economic and social development, but also a system for full-fledged central and local governance, including the legal system underpinning it. This vision should provide strong impetus for the new model, help overcome obstacles hindering its development and address weaknesses and gaps revealed by past experience.In this regard, all stakeholders should take into account the societal changes occurring in Morocco and, as a result, place the youth issue at the heart of the desired development model. Concurrently, we should ponder the most effective ways to improve the situation of our young people, who are our real asset and the country’s everlasting wealth.I firmly believe that the success of any vision hinges upon a change in mentalities. This is the only way to continue promoting the development the country is witnessing in various sectors and at the same time to set the stage for a new culture based on entrepreneurship, self-reliance and accountability.With the same resolve, we need to focus on reforming public administration. No meaningful economic and social development is possible if public service institutions do not discharge their mission properly in terms of serving the citizen and promoting investment, especially as regions, local governments, investment centers and other parties are playing a growing role in spurring development.At the same time, we should strive harder to engage the public and private sectors in innovative, effective partnerships to promote comprehensive development.I must insist, once again, that revisiting the Moroccan development model is an issue which concerns all Moroccans and all of the nation’s forces – individuals, institutions, political parties, trade unions, civil society and professional institutions.By the grace of the Almighty, Morocco has highly skilled human resources as well as solid, well-established institutions. This means we can embark, in a bold, responsible manner, on a constructive dialogue regarding a development model that satisfies all Moroccans.I want to tell all the stakeholders concerned that they are free to contribute objective ideas and proposals. There are neither limits nor conditions to this broad national debate, provided it is in keeping with the Constitution and with the nation’s immutable values enshrined in it.I expect this collective effort to bring about a profound shift in modes of thinking and in the way we address development issues and manage public affairs. It should signal a real break with practices in which time is wasted, development opportunities are lost, reforms impeded and creativity and innovation stifled.Let us keep in mind that Morocco went through difficult times in the past, as with the structural adjustment programs in the 1980s. Throughout its long history, and building on a sovereign will, our country has always managed to overcome obstacles and rise to the various development challenges facing it, thanks to national mobilization and to the sacrifices and combined efforts made by all Moroccans.Ladies and Gentlemen,By turning the spotlight on a key aspect of the question of social and inter-regional justice, this important forum has touched on an essential dimension of the development model we aspire to craft, namely the social and local dimension.As you know, achieving justice between groups and regions has always been at the heart of my political, economic and social policy. It is the ultimate goal of the initiatives and large-scale projects I have launched. The main objective is to improve the daily life of our citizens, in an environment characterized by justice, equity, human dignity and equal opportunity.These values and principles are enshrined in the Constitution. The aim is to help bring about a society committed to solidarity, in which all citizens enjoy security, freedom, dignity, equality and social justice – one in which rights and obligations go hand in hand.However grand ambitions may be, and whatever commitment one may show, the achievement of social and inter-regional justice remains a long, arduous process in all countries. It requires regular evaluation of outcomes and continuous updating of long-term objectives, as well as the development of implementation means and mechanisms.During its first session, the Forum sought to contribute to this objective through the adoption of the Rabat Declaration on Social Justice. In the same vein, the House of Councilors continued to be engaged in the preparation, on a participatory basis, of the Moroccan model for social and inter-regional justice.I am sure you realize that the achievement of social justice requires that a number of key factors be kept in mind. They need to be addressed in a serious, objective and innovative way, particularly the following:the problem of social and inter-regional disparities and the link with the constraints weighing on the management of tax and social security systems;the issue of universal access to basic social services and facilities, this being one of the pillars of social justice;the need to have institutions that are imbued with the values of solidarity and social justice and that contribute to solving citizens’ real problems and responding to their concerns and urgent demands.Ladies and Gentlemen,These are some of the challenges to be tackled in order to achieve social justice – a goal closely related to the development model used. We are aware of the close correlation between the promotion of development and the efficiency of the administrative system.I am sure you will address these and other issues in a wise, clear-sighted, objective and impartial manner, while being invariably guided by the desire to serve the common good.I hope this session of your Forum will lead to practical proposals and recommendations which will contribute to the formulation of an efficient, effective development model that fulfills the needs of Moroccans, achieves the desired social justice and helps us keep abreast of the changes unfolding in Morocco and the world at large.I wish your conference every success.Wassalamu alaikum warahmatullah wabarakatuh.” read more