The ministry's communication department condemned the irregularities that some foreign press correspondents present while covering Morocco’s COVID-19 development.
Rabat – The communications department at the Ministry of Culture, Youth, and Sports said it detected a number of irregularities and professional misconduct, attributed to some correspondents covering the COVID-19 development in Morocco for accredited foreign media.
The department warned that a number of news reports from foreign press included inaccurate figures and data.
The statement from the ministry urged all correspondents to adhere to regulations and laws in place and to respect professional ethics.
The ministry also asked correspondents to check the accuracy of news published on the coronavirus pandemic before reporting.
“We want to emphasize that all government institutions concerned work continuously to facilitate access to information about the development of COVID-19 in Morocco.”
The statement added that the government is also citing all measures taken to combat the impacts of the pandemic.
In addition to foreign media, the country has also launched a campaign against any and all fake news and allegations that spread fear and frustration among citizens, undermining public safety during the health crisis.
Moroccan police have arrested dozens of people who shared intentionally misleading or hateful videos and allegations on the pandemic situation in the country.
Morocco has confirmed 1,141 COVID-19 cases, including 83 fatalities and 88 recoveries, to date.
The country has been intensifying preventive actions in response to the novel coronavirus since its outbreak in Morocco on March 2.
The country started by suspending air and sea routes between Morocco and European countries to limit the spread, before announcing a blanket suspension of all international travel, as well as most inter-city travel, to ensure the safety of its residents and citizens.
Morocco decided to impose a state of emergency on March 19, which includes a nationwide lockdown that came into effect on March 20.
The latest measure was announced yesterday, when the government decided to make the wearing of a medical face mask while in public mandatory effective today, April 7.
The decision is in line with Morocco’s efforts to contain the spread of COVID-19.
Failing to wear a mask may lead to a sentence ranging from one to three months in prison, in accordance with Article 4 of Decree Law 2.20.292.
Violators may also face a fine between MAD 300 and 1,300 ($29 to $126).
The same penalties apply to people who violate the state of emergency. Anyone without an authorized exceptional movement permit cannot go out into public. Anyone who does not hold a signed permit in public can face one to three months in prison and/or a fine of MAD 300 to 1,300 ($29 to $126).