The Feb20 movement’s constitutional demands translate a desire to put an end to the mentality of paternalism and tutelage that strip Moroccans from their human dignity. The Youth have rightfully revolted to say enough! We will determine our destiny! Their cry is similar in nature to the self-determination cries heard during the fight for independence from colonialism. A gray haired man interviewed during the feb 20th protests, rightly said: This is the real independence! I have not experienced this feeling after the French left!
We are overjoyed by this awakening. This genuine Moroccan renaissance will sweep whatever is left from years of irrational diktats, and help create a modern society based on free will and equal guarantees for freedoms.
Yes, constitutional change is a priority that will create the institutional base and legal framework to tackle and revoke once and for all the outdated and unfair laws still impeding the achievement of a social model based on fairness and democratic values.
However, there will be no way forward for Morocco or Moroccans until women and men have access to the same set of equal freedoms and liberties. Just like we fight for an end of tutelage through amendments to article 19 and Part II of the constitution, we need to fight for an end of patriarchal laws and tutelage over women, the other 50% of the Moroccan society. Let’s look at some legal provisions targeting Moroccan women, and entertain ourselves to some mind-blowing, eye-popping, OMG/ LOL prompting, Moudawana provisions:
The marriage that is defective because of the contract is annulled before and after
consummation in the following cases:
– If the marriage was concluded when either spouse had a serious contagious disease, unless the sick person was cured after the marriage;
M4C: Really who gets to decide that???
– When the husband contracts the marriage in order to permit a woman who has been
repudiated three times to remarry her former husband;
M4C: Ok, we can’t make up until you marry someone else, but it can’t be fake…hmmm…maybe then you would realize how great I really am!!!
The dowry amount is specified upon the conclusion of the marriage contract, and in the event it is not specified, the marriage is deemed one of “entrustment.”
M4C:What does that mean really? Kind of like fake, until he pays, wait what is he paying for again?
If the husband and wife do not agree on the amount of dowry during the marriage of “entrustment”, the court shall determine its amount by taking into consideration the social background of both the husband and wife.
M4C: If you marry a rich girl, you better assume…If she is broke, you’re safe
The dowry is paid on the fixed deadline. The wife may ask for the payment of the dowry before starting conjugal life. When conjugal life commences before payment of the dowry, it becomes a debt on the husband.
M4C: A marriage off to a great start!
All possessions the wife brings with her to the marriage including furniture and
accompanying items are her property. When disputes arise concerning the remaining household furnishings, the matter is decided according to general rules of evidence.
However, if neither the husband nor the wife presents any evidence, the husband under oath claims those effects that men habitually use and the wife under oath claims those effects that women habitually use. Objects commonly used by men and women will be, upon the sworn word of both of the spouses, shared between them when neither of them renounces his or her oath.
M4C: This dinner set is MINE! No, it’s MINE! MINE! , NO MINE! Let’s ask the judge then…maybe we can split it?
Breastfeeding is only an impediment to marriage if it occurred during the first two years of the child’s life.
M4C: Ok, since our neighbor Fatima breastfed me when I was 2 years and three days old…I can still marry her daughter…21st century, really?
The temporary impediments to marriage are:
1- Marriage simultaneously to two sisters or to a woman and her paternal or maternal aunt, be the relation one of blood kinship or breastfeeding;
2- Marriage to more than the legally authorized number of wives;
3- After three successive repudiations, unless the wife’s iddat (or legal waiting period) has expired following the lawful conclusion and consummation of a marriage to another man. The remarriage of the thrice repudiated woman to another man annuls the three previous repudiations pronounced by the first repudiating husband. The resumption of marriage with this husband renews his right to repudiate her anew three times.
M4C: Simply LOL! Any sense? Anyone?
4- The marriage of a Muslim woman to a non-Muslim man, and the marriage of a Muslim man to a non-Muslim woman unless she is of the Christian or Jewish faith;
M4C: Read non Muslim men should convert to marry Muslim women….yeah most fake it , we know that, but it’s more important to satisfy the archaic Moudawana laws, than let people decide… oh and if you are a non Muslim, non Christian, non Jewish woman, you need to convert to Islam to marry your sweetheart…so screwed!
5- A married woman or a woman who is observing the iddat (legal waiting period).
M4C: Moudawana, Moudawana, who are you to decide when an adult woman gets married? Suppose you are worried the woman is pregnant, can’t you just require an ultrasound, or just blood work? Wait, this kind of science didn’t exist way back when…sorry, I forgot you belong to a different century.
Polygamy is forbidden when there is the risk of inequity between the wives.
M4C: Huh? Risk?
M4C: Seriously, can anyone provide proof, or example that this ever happened? A judge denying polygamy! in Morocco?
Section 2: Of Children
And finally for today: Sad, sad very sad!
BOOK TWO: OF THE DISSOLUTION OF THE BONDS OF MATRIMONY AND ITS EFFECTS
Title One: General Provisions
Marriage is dissolved by death, annulment, divorce, repudiation or khol’ (divorce in exchange for compensation by the wife).
M4C: The Moudawana still allows men to get out of a marriage through the unfair khol’s scheme, where a woman is treated like a slave who has to buy her freedom. The same rule doesn’t apply to men!
To the Feb20 movement women: Are you listening? Are you fighting for yourselves? Let the men around you know, that you too need the exemption from tutelage and paternalism! Have them fight for you, like you are fighting for them! All free, all equal! We have yet to see signs demanding complete equality between men and women, and freedom for all. Let the new Constitution guarantee it: Men and women enjoy equal rights, freedoms and liberties as recognized by the international declaration of human rights.
Stay tuned for more nonsense…