Semara - After a rocky start, Morocco’s PJD-lead government finally gave the country’s masses something to cheer about. In a courageous and unprecedented move, the Minister of Transport, Mr Abdelaziz Rbahh, fulfilled his promise to the public when he unveiled the list of beneficiaries of the infamous transport licensees.
Semara – After a rocky start, Morocco’s PJD-lead government finally gave the country’s masses something to cheer about. In a courageous and unprecedented move, the Minister of Transport, Mr Abdelaziz Rbahh, fulfilled his promise to the public when he unveiled the list of beneficiaries of the infamous transport licensees.
In Morocco, transport licenses (known as “Lagreema” in the colloquial language) are highly coveted as they guarantee financial success. As such, they were used by members of previous governments, as well as their friends and families, to create an exclusive monopoly in the operation of coaches, buses, taxis and other means of local, regional and national transport. The list of beneficiaries included names from distinguished families from all sectors of Moroccan society, including politics, business, sports and entertainment and civil society. Some of those exposed include the father of Ali El Himma, Abdelbari Zemzemi, Bensedik, Mohamed El Ouafa and Brahim Hakim.
Moroccans welcomed the Minister’s action with appreciation as the brave initiative is the first of its kind in the history of modern Morocco. In fact, the news of the exposure is the hottest topic across Moroccan streets, cafes, homes and internet discussion sites. People everywhere are demanding to know what services did the beneficiaries perform to merit the generous gifts from previous ministers, including those of the interior and transport?
After a quick perusal of the list, most Moroccans will conclude that the beneficiaries did not deserve their illicitly gained licenses because they are rich. Moreover, these beneficiaries of nepotism are sucking the resources of Morocco instead of using their riches and positions of power to give back to their struggling compatriots. As a wise friend once said, “in Morocco, they give to those who do not need and they deprive the needy who deserve such grants and the real nationalists who have served and still serve the nation”.
Revealing a list that has always been top secret is commendable. But the ultimate question is what happens next? For the sake of millions of impoverished Moroccans, the prime minister and his government should implement the following courses of action: (i) seize transport licenses from all the people who have gained them arbitrarily or illicitly, (ii) demand that all the money that was gained as a result of illegally-gotten licenses be returned and placed in a public fund to benefit all Moroccans, (iii) put into place a fair and transparent system for the distribution of transport licenses.
History teaches us that those who eat people’s wealth in private, the day will come when they must vomit it in public. The recent exposure of those who benefited unfairly at the expense of their fellow Moroccans is just the beginning… Tomorrow will surely reveal other secrets.
Edited by Benjamin Villanti
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