Meanwhile, security services are coming under public scrutiny for videos showing them violently dispersing the protests.
Rabat – Morocco has opened an investigation to identify the person in civilian clothes who appeared in videos and photos using violence during teachers’ protests in Rabat on Monday.
The Wilaya (governorate) of the Rabat-Sale-Kenitra region said in a statement today that the man appeared in photos and videos, using violence during the dispersal of a gathering of senior teachers from the regional Academies of Education and Training.
The statement emphasized that the investigation seeks to determine the identity of the person appearing in the photos and to define the circumstances of the case to establish the responsibilities and legal consequences arising therefrom.
Videos and photos online show a man with a black t-shirt with white stripes, kicking people in front of security services.
Minister of Human Rights Mustapha Ramid condemned the situation in a statement on Facebook, saying that “a person in civilian clothes appeared to engage in unlawful violence against citizens in the public street.”
The minister described the acts as “incomprehensive, unjustified, unreasonable, and unacceptable.”
Hundreds of contractual teachers rallied in Rabat, calling on the government to answer their demands.
The contractual teachers, who describe themselves as “forcibly contracted educators,” started their strike in 2019, calling for full integration in the public sector.
The Ministry of Education, meanwhile, stopped recruiting teachers and integrating them in the public sector more than four years ago.
In 2016, the Ministry of Education and Ministry of Finance announced a joint decision to recruit teachers specifically through contracts.
Responding to criticism on why they would sign contracts if they are not satisfied, teachers argue that they inked the documents with the ministry because they were not offered better job opportunities.
“We had no choice. The job market is disappointing,” teacher Oussama Hamdouch said in a previous statement to Morocco World News.
Several citizens are sharing the “protect teachers in Morocco” hashtag in response to the country’s decision to disperse Rabat’s protest on Monday.
People also condemned the use of violence to break up the crowds, re-sharing videos of violence against teachers.
Under a state of emergency since March 2020, Morocco has banned gatherings and protests due to COVID-19.