2002 Moroccan general election

General elections were held in Morocco on 27 September 2002. The elections were the first since King Mohammed VI of Morocco had come to the throne in 1999 and international observers saw it as a test of his commitment to democracy.[1] The election saw an Islamist party the Justice and Development Party make strong gains but the outgoing government kept a majority in the Assembly of Representatives.

2002 Moroccan general election
Morocco
← 1997 27 September 2002 2007 →

325 seats in the House of Representatives
163 seats needed for a majority
Party Leader % Seats +/–
USFP Abderrahmane Youssoufi 11.88 50 -7
Istiqlal Abbas El Fassi 9.89 48 +16
PJD Abdelkrim al-Khatib 9.84 42 New
RNI Ahmed Osman 9.28 41 -5
MP Mohand Laenser 6.56 27 -13
MNP Mahjoubi Aherndane 5.16 18 -1
UC Mohamed Abied 5.14 16 -34
FFD Thami Khiari 4.90 12 +3
PND Abdellah Elkadiri 4.56 12 +2
PPS Ismail Alaoui 4.55 11 +2
Democratic Union 4.04 10 New
PSD Aissa Ouardighi 2.96 6 +1
MDS Mahmoud Archane 2.70 7 -25
Al-ʽAhd 2.28 5 New
Alliance of Liberties 2.18 4 -5
PCNI 1.99 1 New
PRD Abderrahman El Kuhen 1.83 3 New
Citizens' Forces Abderrahim Lahyuyi 1.72 2 New
PED Ahmed Alami 1.50 2 New
Liberal Mohammed Ziane 1.36 3 New
PSUG 1.35 3 New
PDI Abdelwahed Maach Maach 1.01 2 +1
This lists parties that won seats. See the complete results below.
Prime Minister before Prime Minister after
Abderrahmane Youssoufi
USFP
Driss Jettou
Independent

CampaignEdit

The election took place under a revised voting system in which 325 deputies were elected from 91 constituencies.[1] The new rules guaranteed women would be at least 10% of the Assembly of Representatives by reserving 30 seats for them.[2] In total 5,865 candidates from 26 political parties and 5 lists of independents stood in the election including 965 female candidates.[2][3] With many voters illiterate, each party had different symbols such as a car, alarm clock, horse, wasp or lamp which were printed on the ballot paper for voters to select.[4]

Even the prime minister, Abderrahmane Youssoufi, agreed that previous elections in Morocco had been rigged but the new King Mohammed VI had pledged that this election should be kept free. Indeed, observers at polling stations reported that the election was much cleaner than previous elections.[4] The campaign itself was low key with a low turnout expected. Issues raised in the campaign included rising prices, a salary freeze, economic stability and improvements in education and public health.[3] Poverty and unemployment, combined with the powers which the King had reserved to himself meant many people saw little reason to vote.[1][2]

The only Islamist party to stand in the election, the Justice and Development Party, did not stand in all of the seats to ensure it would not provoke violence such as had occurred in neighbouring Algeria after the 1991 election.[4] They supported the introduction of Islamic law but pledged to work within the existing political system.[5] The banned Islamist group Al Adl Wa Al Ihssane was seen as being the popular group in the country but called on supporters to boycott the election as they said it would achieve nothing.[4]

ResultsEdit

The results saw the Justice and Development Party make strong gains and over doubled its vote share to become the third largest party in parliament.[6] However the parties that made up the previous coalition kept a strong majority in the legislature with the Socialist Union of Popular Forces remaining the largest party.[6] Women won 35 seats in the legislature,[3] a big increase from the two who had been elected in the 1997 election.[7]

Following the election King Mohammed VI appointed the interior minister Driss Jettou as prime minister[8] and a new government was formed with roughly the same political parties supporting the coalition as before the election.[9]

PartyVotes%Seats
LocalNationalTotal+/–
Socialist Union of Popular Forces718,72511.8845550–7
Istiqlal Party598,2269.8944448+16
Justice and Development Party595,4399.8438442+33
National Rally of Independents561,5149.2837441–5
Popular Movement396,9326.5625227–13
National Popular Movement312,2395.1616218–1
Constitutional Union310,9395.1414216–34
Front of Democratic Forces296,2884.9010212+3
National Democratic Party275,8844.5610212+2
Party of Progress and Socialism275,0244.559211+2
Democratic Union244,5584.049110New
Democratic Socialist Party179,1312.96606+1
Democratic and Social Movement163,5462.70707–25
Al-ʽAhd138,1862.28505New
Alliance of Liberties131,7962.18404New
National Ittihadi Congress120,3301.99101New
Reform and Development Party110,6331.83303New
Citizens' Forces104,2471.72202New
Environment and Development Party90,6091.50202New
Moroccan Liberal Party82,0881.36303New
Party of the Unified Socialist Left81,9851.35303–1
Democratic Independence Party61,2581.01202+1
Citizen Initiative for Development49,7100.82000New
Party of Renewal and Equity39,4830.65000New
Action Party28,5630.47000–2
Independents83,3461.38000New
Total6,050,679100.00295303250
Valid votes6,050,67984.45
Invalid/blank votes1,114,52715.55
Total votes7,165,206100.00
Registered voters/turnout13,884,46751.61
Source: García

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ a b c "Moroccan poll will test commitment to democracy". Financial Times. 27 September 2002. p. 13.
  2. ^ a b c Leicester, John (28 September 2002). "Moroccans to elect 30 female MPs". The Scotsman. p. 13.
  3. ^ a b c "MOROCCO: parliamentary elections Majliss-annouwab, 2002". Inter-Parliamentary Union. Retrieved 13 May 2009.
  4. ^ a b c d Tremlett, Giles (28 September 2002). "In brief: Islamists hold key to Moroccan elections: King relaxes reins to allow first step towards real democracy". The Guardian. p. 15.
  5. ^ Leicester, John (29 September 2002). "Moroccan fundamentalist party in election gains". Scotland on Sunday. p. 24.
  6. ^ a b Wilkinson, Isambard (30 September 2002). "Islamic upsurge in Morocco poll". The Daily Telegraph. p. 41.
  7. ^ "MOROCCO: parliamentary elections Majlis Nawab, 1997". Inter-Parliamentary Union. Retrieved 13 May 2009.
  8. ^ "Moroccan king names new Cabinet, no rep from Islamic party". Toronto Star. 8 November 2002. Archived from the original on 8 October 2012.
  9. ^ "Morocco unveils new coalition". BBC Online. 8 November 2002.