By Jamal Saidi
By Jamal Saidi
Morocco World News
Casablanca, December 18, 2012
The Moroccan governmental alliance is likely to collapse following the change in the politburo of its political parties.
The first indication that the change in political parties affects the government occurs as a result of the election of Hamid Shabat, the new leader of Istiqlal party one of the main components of the PJD-led government. Shabat has been controversial through his vehement demand for a cabinet reshuffle. His call has not been meet so far.
One day after the election of Driss Lachger as a leader of the opposing Socialist party, he took a further step by preaching the revival of the Koutla or Coalition. The Koutla is a political coalition that includes the Istiqlal party, the party of Progress and Socialism, as well as the Socialist Union of Popular Force known by its French acronym as the USFP, Lachger’s party, which is currently in the opposition.
The election of Driss Lachger is apparently perceived by Shabat as a golden opportunity to resurrect the Koutla. The leader of Istiqlal party was quoted by the Daily newspaper Alakhbar as saying that “the election of Driss Lachger as the first secretary general of the socialist union of popular forces party ( USFP) made the Istiqlal party take a big step towards the revival of Alkoutla as a priority, regardless of our position, either in the government or in the opposition”
Shabat implies his alliance with the leading Islamist party may not last. The status of his party as a Koutla member and a participant in the government can be viewed by his political opponents as illogical. Worse, it may be considered as a sort of political schizophrenia. This is due to the fact that the USFP, a Koutla member, is one of the main opposition parties in Morocco.
“Once the new politburo of the socialist party is formed, we are going to proceed in our negotiation in order to resurrect the Koutla so that it would play its role for the sake of preserving the high interest of the country,” Shabat added.
Aware of the non-ending process of change within political parties, the PJD reacts accordingly. Abdel Aziz Aftati, a PJD MP considers Shabat’s initiative to be “uncalculated adventure”. “We are not afraid of resorting once again to the Moroccan people through announcing premature elections,” the MP was quoted by Al Akhbar as saying.
The Islamist party won the highest number of the parliamentary seats during last elections, but not enough to form a government without having to get into political compromises with other parties. Therefore, the party had to establish a political alliance with few other parties including the Istiqlal party. A year later after it was appointed by King Mohammed VI, the PJD-led government appears more than ever to be moving on shaky grounds.