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Benkirane fails in his attempt to incite unions against the Moroccan government

The Islamist leader has taken a stand against the agreement reached between Ajanouch's government and the main trade unions
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The leader of the Justice and Development party, Abdelilah Benkirane, continues to try to incite the population against the government of the leader of the National Rally of Independents party, Aziz Ajanouch. This time, Benkirane is said to have tried to boycott the social agreement reached between Ajanouch and several representatives of the most important trade unions in the Alawite kingdom.

Ajanouch, in the framework of the opening of the 6th Parliamentary Forum on Social Justice, invited "the trade unions and the CGEM to undertake a serious and responsible reflection on how to institutionalise social dialogue so that it becomes enforceable and regular", in addition to agreeing on "a national charter of social dialogue defining the rights and duties of the various actors". 

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Following various meetings between Ajanouch and the trade union representatives, he was able to reach an agreement with them, which was officially signed on 30 April of this year. In this respect, the Moroccan trade union federations are said to have welcomed the measure, as well as several political parties and trade unions in the country.

In it, the Moroccan government is said to have reached an agreement between employers and the three most important trade union centres in the Arab country, which would have achieved several labour compromises. These include a rise in the minimum wage for workers in both the public and private sectors, as well as a reform of the pension system. 

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According to the agreed text, the three parties have managed to reach a 10% increase in the minimum wage, which would benefit industry, commerce and the free professions. This measure would be implemented in two increases, the first one by 5% in September of this year and the other one in September 2023.

In addition, they have decreed an increase in the minimum wage for civil servants in the public sector by 2,823 dirhams, equivalent to 286 euros, to 3,500 dirhams, or 332 euros, from next September.

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The agreement is also expected to increase workers' family allowances, in addition to improving conditions related to the pension system, such as lowering the number of years of contributions to make it easier to reach retirement age. In addition, the signatory parties are said to be committed to improving working conditions for women in various sectors, institutionalising social dialogue and speeding up the regulation of the right to strike.

However, on the occasion of Labour Day, Benkirane reportedly tried to "boycott" the agreement after he tried to incite the unions against Ajanouch's government.

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Despite these attempts, Benkirane did not achieve the result he had hoped for. This is what the secretary general of the Moroccan Confederation of Labour, Moneim Mayara, said in a statement. In the statement, he said that Benkirane "has the right to express his opinion on public affairs according to his position in the Justice and Development Party", but assured that his union "is not concerned by Benkirane's statements" and called his statements "provocative" after affirming that "the interest of the nation is above alignments, and that is why the Moroccan Labour Union reached an agreement with the government". 

Even so, the Islamist leader declared that "the agreement signed by the unions on Saturday does not live up to what was proposed to them in 2016". Alongside this, he claimed that the unions had become "mere instruments in the hands of the General Confederation of Moroccan Enterprises". 

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For his part, Ajanouch has sought to dissociate himself from these accusations, going so far as to point out that "the partners will find in us all the necessary support to protect the fundamental rights of the worker, guaranteeing decent working conditions and social protection, and contributing to the deepening of the democratic participation of the parties concerned through dialogue".

In this way, the head of government underlined that the agreement would have been a success after managing to "deliberate on the social priorities that interest the representatives of the working class in the private and public sector, as well as the representatives of the employers, whether in the short, medium or long term".