The legal text came after citizens began to slack off in terms of wearing face masks in public.
The legal text modifies the fourth article of Decree-Law 2.20.292, relating to Morocco’s state of health emergency.
The Moroccan government adopted the bill during a meeting on Wednesday, August 12, chaired by Head of Government Saad Eddine El Othmani.
Morocco’s Minister of the Interior Abdelouafi Laftit explained that the newly-adopted text implements a fixed fine of MAD 300 ($32), to be paid immediately by people not wearing face masks in public, in order to avoid trial.
The new measure aims to simplify and accelerate the administrative and legal process of applying sanctions against those violating safety measures against COVID-19.
Under the new legal text, offenders have the possibility of paying the fine in cash at the time of the infraction. In that case, the enforcement officer immediately delivers a report to the offender, which serves as a receipt for payment.
In the event that the offender is unable to pay the fine immediately, the officer grants the violator a period of 24 hours from the recorded infraction time.
The offender receives a report notifying him of the police or gendarmerie department where he needs to pay the fine. The offender then has to pay the fine at the designated office after presenting the infraction report.
If the offender exceeds the 24-hour period without paying the fine, the new decree allows the officer who recorded the infraction to send a report to the Public Prosecutor’s Office to take the appropriate legal measures.
Article 4 of Decree-Law 2.20.292 provides for prison sentences ranging from one to three months and a fine of MAD 300 to MAD 1,300 ($140), or one of the two penalties.
The Moroccan government discussed and approved draft decree 2.20.572 after the Moroccan Parliament unanimously adopted it on August 7.
During a presentation before the House of Representatives and the House of Councillors, Laftit explained that the new legal text came after citizens across Morocco began to slack off in terms of wearing face masks in public.