Morocco World News
Morocco World News
New York, February 18, 2013
The vice-Attorney General of Midelt, a town in central Morocco, is reported to have verbally and physically abused a mechanic after the latter refused to immediately take care of his request.
According to the Moroccan news site Lakome, on Saturday, Said Fareh, the vice-Attorney General showed up at an auto-repair show where Hisham Moulah Hisham, the victims of this abuse, works. When asked by the Ministry of Justice’s official to repair his car, Hisham said that he had other people waiting and he could only repair the car by Monday. Outraged seemingly for not being given a preferential treatment over the other citizens, the Justice’s official “insulted the mechanic, spitted on his face and threatened to give him a lesson and make him regret what he did.”
After the vice-Attorney General left the auto-repair shop, two police officers showed up at the workshop and asked the mechanic to accompany them to the police precinct. Upon arriving there, he was asked to show is identity card, and when he said that he did not carry it on him, the officers told him that he was violating the law, as he was working without carrying his ID.
Until that moment the mechanic did not know that he was dealing with the Vice-Attorney General. He realized that he “was in trouble with an important personality in the city,” as he told Lakome, only when the latter came to the police precinct.
Upon his arrival to the precinct, the Vice-Attorney General spitted again on the mechanic’s face and slapped him. Crippled by panic and fear of what could happen next, the mechanic begged the justice official to forgive him. The latter told the former that he has to kiss his feet if he wanted to be forgiven, a demand that the mechanic had no choice but to bow to.
After this humiliating scene that occurred with the complicity of the police officers, the vice-Attorney General, who is entrusted with the mission of defending citizens’ right, insulted the mechanic again and asked the law enforcement officials to release him.
‘It was a moment of hell”, the victim of the abuse was quoted by Lakome as saying.
The abusive behavior of the vice-Attorney General will undoubtedly spark a stir in Morocco and cast doubt on the progress being made by Morocco towards the respect of citizens’ fundamental rights.
“This is yet another blatant example of brazen disregard to human dignity and legal accountability. The legal system is lagging way behind all the rosy rhetoric that the establishment had the citizens consume to gluttony. This offender should be paraded as a deterrent to all those using their power to the detriment of the citizenry,” said Mohammed Brahimi a University professor based in Boston.
It remains to be seen if the Justice Minister, Mustapha Ramid, will open an investigation to shed light on this case and bring the offenders to account.
What Moroccans citizens like Hisham Hammi expect from their officials is not to give them grandiloquent speeches every now and then, but to bring about significant changes that would have a positive impact on their daily lives and make them feel they respected and protected by the state. The credibility of the slogans repeated by the members of the PJD-led government will depend greatly on their ability to implement the letter and spirit of the new constitution and put an end to these authoritarian abuses.
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