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The CMA to the head of the Moroccan government: the bill relating to the new identity card is anti-constitutional and illegal

Date : 2020-06-17 17:29:00

Mr. Saadedine El-Othmani
Head of the Moroccan Government
Palace of Touarga, Rabat, Morocco

Mr. Head of Government,

On 12 March this year, your government approved draft law No. 04.20 on the new national electronic identity card (CNIE). This bill was then transmitted to the House of Representatives on 3 June with a view to its adoption.

This bill provides that all the information on the future identity card will be transcribed in Arabic and Latin characters (Article 4 et seq.). The card itself would also bear in Arabic and French characters the expressions "Kingdom of Morocco" and "national identity card". As if the two official languages of Morocco were Arabic and French.

Tamazight, the indigenous language of Morocco and the entire North Africa and Sahara region, enshrined as an "official language" in the Moroccan Constitution (article 5), is excluded from the new identity document. This violates the country's fundamental law and is a direct attack on the Amazigh identity of millions of citizens of this country, who have been robbed of part of their being.

Moreover, this bill and the card as it is conceived today violate Organic Law No. 26-16 of 12/09/2019 on the implementation of the official character of the Amazigh language, and in particular article 21, which states that "the information contained in the following official documents shall be written in the Amazigh language, alongside the Arabic language: the national identity card, passport, driving licence, residence cards for foreigners established in Morocco, various personal cards and certificates issued by the administration".

Ultimately, in legal terms, Bill No. 04.20 is unconstitutional and illegal. Moreover, it testifies once again to the unwillingness of the Moroccan government to fully recognize and respect the Amazighity of Morocco and it highlights racism and institutional discrimination against all that is Amazigh in this country. It also proves that the Arab-nationalist and Amazighophobic lobby is strongly represented in the upper echelons of Moroccan power and that it acts daily against Amazighity, even in defiance of the law.

The Amazigh World Congress (CMA) firmly denounces these Moroccan public or elected officials, who are putting all the brakes on the advent of a Morocco reconciled with its authentic Amazigh history, language and culture, and warns the government against the actions of these carriers of the racist anti-amazigh virus that could dangerously cause instability in the country.

The CMA therefore demands that the Moroccan government modify its draft national identity card to bring it into conformity with the country's legislation, which is the least it can do, but also to immediately remove from office the main perpetrators of this illegal act, Mr. Abdelouafi Laftit, Minister of the Interior, and Mr. Mouhcine Yejjou, Divisional Commissioner and head of the CNIE project at the General Directorate of National Security (DGSN).

The CMA is also expecting from the Moroccan Parliament an amendment of this bill in the sense of respect for the laws in force and history.

Please accept, Mr. Head of Government, the expression of our highest consideration.

Paris, 3/06/2970 – 15/06/2020

The Board of CMA.

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