HM the king Sends Message to participants in First National Conference on Human Development
HM King Mohammed VI sent a message to participants in the first National Conference on Human Development, which opened on Thursday in Skhirat, under the theme: "Early childhood: a commitment for the future."
Here follows the full text of the royal Message, read by Interior minister, Abdelouafi Laftit:
"Praise be to God,
May peace and blessings be upon the Prophet, His Kith and Kin
Ladies and Gentlemen,
It gives me great pleasure to send this message to the participants in the first National Conference on Human Development. I was keen to grant my patronage to this event, given the great interest I have taken in this special social project since I launched it in 2005.
Indeed, the lofty goal of this project is to place Moroccan citizens at the heart of the development process, making them the main focus of public policies with a view to enhancing human dignity.
Political and civic rights will be fully established in people's daily lives only if they are supplemented with economic, social, cultural and environmental rights.
In this regard, and having undertaken a thorough and meticulous assessment of phases I and II of the implementation of the National Initiative for Human Development, I have decided to launch phase III. The aim is to build on achievements and ensure a re-focusing of programs.
A new engineering method has been adopted to ensure human capital development for upcoming generations. This will be achieved by overcoming, in a direct, proactive way, the basic hurdles impeding a person’s development at any stage in his or her life, supporting the segments of population facing difficult conditions, launching next-generation initiatives that create jobs and promoting income-generating activities.
The convening of this event, for which the organizers have chosen the theme Early childhood: a commitment for the future, is highly commendable. I therefore hope that, through your discussions, you will undertake a thorough analysis of the subject and give it the special attention it deserves.
This is a theme which is of topical interest, given the importance I attach to improving the situation of children. Today’s children are tomorrow’s men and women; they will shape the country’s future and ensure comprehensive, integrated economic and social development.
This conference falls within the framework of our efforts to promote human resource development. It is in line with the major reforms taking place in the country, particularly in the areas of education, training and scientific research.
Ladies and Gentlemen,
I am sure you realize that investing in the intangible aspects of human development - of which early childhood is a key stage - constitutes a solid basis as well as the proper starting point for building a country for the future. This is one of the main challenges which we are seeking to meet so as to open up promising prospects and offer job opportunities to upcoming generations.
Our country has made tremendous efforts with regard to early childhood issues, reducing mortality rates among children and pregnant women, curbing the prevalence of stunting, improving nutrition and widening access to primary education and healthcare for the segments concerned. Nevertheless, marked inadequacies remain at this level because of a lack of coordination when laying down public policy and an absence of convergence and coherence in terms of action on the ground. This state of affairs is further compounded by regional, economic and social disparities.
Given this chronic situation, and considering the horizontal nature of the actions carried out under the National Initiative for Human Development, and the role the Initiative plays as a key driver of social development, the latter stands out as a model to be emulated. The aim is to pool efforts, consolidate participatory mechanisms at regional level and coordinate public policies within the framework of a multi-pronged, well-defined strategy with integrated economic, social, educational and cultural dimensions.
Proper operationalization of the program on early childhood - a stage of critical importance in an person’s life - will help address inequalities by carefully targeting the groups concerned in needy communities.
Ladies and Gentlemen,
The new vision behind the National Initiative for Human Development is of crucial importance. It makes investing in the intangible aspects of human capital the top priority, given that it is the starting point for reforms and lays solid foundations for building the future. For this reason, this approach should be mainstreamed in the formulation and implementation of public social policies in order to come up with viable solutions to the real problems of the citizens, choosing the best methods and devising the most effective ways to overcome the hurdles impeding comprehensive human development.
In particular, the healthcare system needs to be improved by attaching greater importance to maternal and child health, thereby ensuring fair and equitable access to social services. There should also be a homogeneous offer regarding early childhood education, especially in rural areas, in order to combat school dropout. Moreover, awareness-raising campaigns need to be organized to sensitize target groups on the importance of the matter and its positive impact on the child, the family and society. Action in this respect should be consistent with the guidelines set out in my message to the participants in the National Day on Early Childhood Education.
I also hope you will look into aspects relating to governance, finance and training to improve the quality of services, encourage entrepreneurship and creativity, and raise awareness among target groups.
These are some of the basic elements one needs to bear in mind to ensure the success of this new social policy, which makes the development of the intangible aspects an inevitable choice. The aim is to rise to the challenge of early childhood - which is a crucial stage in a person’s life - and to make sure our children are open to the future in a balanced environment where justice and equity prevail, and where poverty and social exclusion do not stand in the way.
Ladies and Gentlemen,
The accomplishments Morocco has made in various areas in recent years attest to the fact that we are on the right track. However, there are other challenges that require greater efforts.
These challenges can be met only if we adopt an effective approach in the governance and management of the country’s social policy. In this regard, investing in human and social capital should be our main concern. That is, indeed, the starting point for the adoption of a new series of reform initiatives to rekindle hope and build a country for the future.
I therefore want to commend you, once again, on choosing early childhood as the theme for this conference. I hope this will become an annual event that allows us to have an in-depth discussion on the subject, exchange views and enrich the debate. This should make it possible to take stock of achievements in this area, identify the obstacles hindering the successful implementation of this important project, and consider the actions and measures that need to be taken to promote human and social development in our country.
This national conference is an opportunity for you to adopt a set of recommendations and proposals in order to launch innovative initiatives and find practical solutions to many of the problems faced in this field, thereby fulfilling our aspirations for a future in which our children may enjoy further progress and prosperity, in a free, dignified environment.
I pray that Almighty God assist you and grant you every success.
Wassalamu alaikum warahmatullah wabarakatuh."
MAP 19 September 2019