Morocco’s Government Council has extended the country’s state of health emergency until February 10 at 6 p.m.
Head of Government Saad Eddine El Othmani announced the decision today, January 7, after chairing a meeting with government members.
Morocco’s state of health emergency was scheduled to end on January 10. However, it is now customary for the Moroccan government to extend it on a monthly basis.
Since it was first declared on March 19, the state of health emergency has witnessed nine extensions. Today’s extension is the tenth of its kind.
The state of emergency, organized through Law 2.20.292, represents a legal framework that allows Morocco’s government to promptly take exceptional measures against COVID-19.
The measures include lockdowns on neighborhoods and cities, travel bans, and night curfews, among other precautions aimed at stemming the spread of the virus.
The extension comes as Morocco continues to record hundreds of new COVID-19 deaths and dozens of coronavirus-related deaths everyday. On January 6, the Ministry of Health announced 1,642 new COVID-19 cases and 37 deaths.
As of January 6 at 6 p.m., Morocco has confirmed a total of 447,081 COVID-19 cases since the start of the crisis. Morocco’s tally makes it the second-worst-hit country in Africa, behind South Africa, and the 33rd worldwide.
The figure includes 418,744 recoveries, 7,618 deaths, and 20,719 active cases.
The epidemiological situation in Morocco is still witnessing several territorial disparities. Regions such as Casablanca-Settat, Tangier-Tetouan-Al Hoceima, Rabat-Sale-Kenitra, Marrakech-Safi, and Souss-Massa continue to record more COVID-19 cases than other regions.
The disparities have prompted the Moroccan government, in collaboration with local authorities, to implement targeted lockdowns and strict curfews on cities such as Casablanca, Marrakech, Tangier, and Agadir.