Panafrican News Agency

Morocco lauded by Human Rights Council for policy towards women

Dakar, Senegal (PANA) - Several participants at the 50th session of the Human Rights Council in Geneva, including experts from the Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW), congratulated the Kingdom of Morocco for actions taken by King Mohammed VI to improve women's rights.

This was during the examination, on Wednesday and Thursday, of the periodic report submitted by the country under the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women, a source in Dakar said on Friday.

The participants at the session highlighted the raising of the legal age of marriage and the affirmation of the principle of equality of men and women in family relations, which are now enshrined in the Moroccan Family Code.

They also welcomed the Moroccan Constitution's ban on all forms of discrimination as reflected in several laws.

Progress in women's representation in decision-making bodies since the early 2000s was also cited as evidence of the improved social status of Moroccan women.

Presenting her country's report, the Moroccan Minister of Solidarity, Social Integration and the Family, Aouatif Hayar, said that Morocco had acceded in 2022 to the Optional Protocol to the Convention, which establishes an individual complaints procedure, and that the Kingdom had lifted its reservations to certain provisions of the Convention.

The Minister then referred to the legislative reforms that have been an important step in addressing gender issues, including the reforms of the Penal Code and the Code of Criminal Procedure, the law against violence against women, the law on combating trafficking in human beings and the law on the protection of domestic workers.

The representation of women in the House of Representatives has undergone a significant evolution, said Ms. Hayar, indicating that the number of women has increased from 81 (or 20.5%) in 2016 to 96 (or 24.3%) in 2021.

Morocco has a set of laws and regulations that aim to establish equality and achieve parity between men and women in senior positions and positions of responsibility in the public administration, Hayar said, adding that Morocco in 2018 adopted a law on the fight against violence against women.

The Moroccan Minister also shared the strategic vision of the 2015-2030 education reform, which emphasises the generalisation of schooling for children, especially girls.

She also pointed out that Morocco has also seen a considerable improvement in health system indicators in recent years, including a decrease in maternal and child mortality rates.

Ms Hayar said that the government's priorities were the economic and political empowerment of women, as well as the fight against violence against women.

-0- PANA AD/IN/JSG/SOC/BBA/MA 24June2022