"Take care of your kitchen, watch Choumicha' s shows, and leave the national team alone," said Adil El Omari, addressing a listener, on his July 04 program.
Rabat – During his July 4 radio show “The Scientists of Mars,” the controversial host Adil El Omari, made sexist comments which have caused outrage on social networks. Radio Mars consequently issued a statement on July 5, announcing El Omari’s three-day suspension.
Reading listeners’ messages on the topic of the Moroccan national football team, El Omari made misogynist comments in response to a message from a female listener who expressed her opinion on the Atlas Lions’ participation in the African Cup of Nations (CAN).
The Radio Mars host addressed the listener, telling her that she’d better “take care of her cooking, watch Choumicha’ s shows (famous Moroccan cooking show) and leave the national team alone.”
Internet users, including journalists, supporters of football teams, and activists’ associations, instantly expressed their anger and disapproval of the host’s comments.
Fille Football Association stated, in a post on its Facebook page, “unfortunately, we are still witnessing sexist statements that reduce women to household chores, even worse, coming from a so-called journalist on a Moroccan sports’ radio show – the only one of its kind in Morocco.”
The association expressed its disappointment that such comments came from “a journalist who is supposed to be a source of information and awareness, and is held by the respect of fundamental values, in particular, freedom of expression and equality.”
They then directly addressed the host, inviting him “to learn about the latest advances in the women’s football sector, and the national and international enthusiasm sparked by this game, especially in this year’s FIFA Women’s World Cup.”
The association also called upon Radio Mars, to act on the comments made by its host and to apologize to Moroccan women.
Adil El Omari made an official apology on July 05, on Radio Mars. The host expressed that there was no intended malice behind his remarks. He then said, “if the Moroccan woman has deemed my remarks degrading, then I apologize to her.”
Hicham El Khlifi, CEO of Radio Mars, qualified the misogynistic comments as “inadmissible and intolerable.” “They go against the editorial line of Radio Mars,” he said.