Moroccan vote: RNI takes lead, PJD suffers crushing blow

The party of the National Independents Rally (RNI) has emerged on top in the legislative elections in Morocco with 97…

The party of the National Independents Rally (RNI) has emerged on top in the legislative elections in Morocco with 97 seats ahead of the Authenticity and Modernity Party (PAM) with 82 seats.The Istiqlal Party (PI) has 78 seats, after the counting of 96 percent of the votes, the Minister of Interior, Abdelouafi Laftit announced on Thursday.

According to the provisional results, the Socialist Union of Popular Forces (USFP) has 35 seats, followed by the Popular Movement (MP) with 26 the Party of Progress and Socialism (PPS) has 20 seats while the Constitutional Union captured 20.

The big loser in these elections is the Justice and Development Party (PJD), which has been leading the government since 2012 with two successive terms. 

The PJD suffered a crushing blow by obtaining only 12 seats, said the minister, who said the elections have recorded a 50.35 percent turnout more than in 2016 when the attendance was 42 percent.

Thus, the September 8, 2021 elections saw the participation of 8,789,676 male and female voters, representing an increase of more than two million voters, compared to the 2016 parliamentary elections.

This reflects the importance that Moroccan citizens attach to the exercise.

According to the minister, the voting process took place generally under “normal” circumstances in all regions of the kingdom, except for a few “isolated” cases which did not affect the conduct of the polls. 

The elections took place in full respect of the secrecy of the ballot and the credibility of the vote counting process, in the presence of representatives of the lists of candidates, the official said.

The elections, the third of their kind since the adoption of the 2011 constitution, took place in exceptional circumstances marked by the Covid-19 pandemic, which impacted the conduct of the election campaign.

Political parties were forced to replace meetings by the use of new technologies, via social media, to explain their electoral programs.

The election also took place after a reform of the election code, which changed the quotient formula, abolished the electoral threshold and expanded the cases of incompatibility in the accumulation of terms.

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