In the last few weeks, the Moroccan government adopted many measures to limit the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the most vulnerable. These are positive decisions that deserve respect and encouragement. However, we ask the Moroccan government to include migrants and refugees in Morocco in their social and economic measures and to help them survive the COVID-19 pandemic. The assistance provided by some local NGOs, in the form of sandwich distributions or food baskets are insufficient and do not always target those in need. This help may become scarce or impossible to provide with the possible extension of the confinement period.
As migrants, activists, migration researchers, we ask the government of Morocco to include in their socio-economic measures the migrants that work in the informal sector.
Migrants and Refugees from West and Central Africa in Morocco work in domestic work, as babysitters, in construction or farming. They are street traders, paid per day, or are employed without a contract. They are brave women and men who need to support and help their families. However, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, like many around the world, their life, their revenues were interrupted. They cannot pay the rent or the monthly charges and risk eviction at any time.
They are part of Morocco; they work among Moroccans and contribute to the Moroccan economy in all its diversity. For them, Morocco has become a second home. Their inclusion in the socio-economic measures taken by the Moroccan government will contribute in helping them survive the COVID-19 crisis.
It is also urgent to help migrants and refugees that are blocked in the forests close to Nador and Tangier. This population is the most vulnerable. They cannot move freely to buy food and rely on NGOs works that cannot reach them due to the confinement. We ask the government to commit to this population by taking the necessary measures to guarantee their access to water, food, and health services, which are fundamental rights.
During the last few years, guided by his majesty King Mohamed VI, may God preserve him, Morocco proudly re-joined the African Union. Morocco is also the first countries North African country to offer a massive regularisation for migrants from West and Central Africa. We ask the government of Morocco to renew its commitments toward our continent, by including migrants and refugees in the socio-economics measures and by providing a concrete and urgent help to those who live in the forest next to Tangier and Nador.
This petition is open to be signed by anyone who agrees with its content, no matter their political or religious affiliation, their economic or social class, gender or sexual orientation. We declare, as the authors of this petition, that we do not have any agenda, be it political or otherwise. We hereby also declare that our only goal is to simply open channels of dialogue in order to help people who are suffering at the moment. For everyone who read the petition and who agrees with the message in it, local NGOs, international NGOs, researchers, journalists, students, migrants, and Moroccan citizens, We ask you to sign it and share it so the government could hear and act on our demands and wishes.