Rabat- Over 2,000 unemployed Moroccans took to the streets in Rabat on Sunday to deploy one important message: they will not rest until the government sorts out the nation’s unemployment problems.
In Morocco, unemployment, especially among young university graduates, is rampant. The official unemployment rate is 9%, but among university graduates under the age of 34, the rate is 30%.
Though the government and development groups have tried to tackle this persistent problem with vocational training programs targeted at promoting entrepreneurship, the government has not made much room for its university-educated job seekers within the civil service sector.
Many of the marchers are demanding that the government allot jobs within the public sector. “The solution for unemployment is to create government jobs, especially for those with university degrees,” said Jawad Karoom, one of the marchers who graduated with a degree in nuclear physics in 2012.
Associated Press reported that many of the marchers, who traveled to Rabat from all across the country, dismissed the idea of getting a job in the private sector.
Another marcher, Youssef Ben Ibrahim, who holds a Master’s degree in French literature and has been unemployed since his graduation two years ago, said “the private sector is not well organized and there are no guarantees for wages or good benefits — the public sector guarantees dignity.”
The government is under a severe amount of pressure to reform not only the public employment sector to allow for more government jobs, but also to reform the education sector to better prepare students for the post-graduate workforce.
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