By Larbi Arbaoui
By Larbi Arbaoui
Morocco World News
Tinejdad, July 24, 2012
Mustapha Ramid, The Minister of Justice and freedoms, on Monday, said that the prison population in Morocco exceeds 100% of their actual capacity, noting that prisons currently host approximately 65,000 prisoners, when their capacity is just 30,000 prisoners.
In response to an oral question phrased by Karim Ezzayadi, from the group of Democratic Progress, about “the phenomenon of overcrowding in correctional institutions in Morocco,” during the oral session held in the House of Representatives, Ramid explained that this problem is mainly due to the relative increase in criminality and the absence of a modern penal code offering other alternatives to detention and punishment.
During this session, chaired by MP Sharafat Afilal, member of the group of democratic progress, and the Deputy Speaker of Parliament, Karim Ziadi highlighted that the matter of asking the question comes as part of the bitter reality reflected in the recent report prepared by the Committee of Justice, Legislation and Human Rights, after the visit of some of its members to the prison of “Okasha” in Casablanca in a reconnaissance mission.
Ramid has also raised the issue of the discretionary power of the general prosecutor and the judge ( the parties having the right to order the detention) referring to the non-recourse to alternative punishments such as bail, judicial control, or the delay in issuing judgments against detainees, which consequently increased the number of pretrial detainees.
The minister emphasized that this situation requires a set of legislative and financial measures, indicating, in this regard, that the issue of criminal policy, particularly with regard to preventive detention, will be on the agenda during two seminars planned in the national dialogue on a global and profound reform of justice.