Authenticity and Modernity Party

Authenticity and Modernity Party
Parti authenticité et modernité
حزب الأصالة والحداثة
General Secretary Ilyas El Omari
Founder Fouad Ali El Himma
Founded 2008 (2008)
Merger of Al Ahd, National Democratic Party, Environment and Development Party
Headquarters Rabat
Ideology Royalism
International affiliation None
House of Representatives
102 / 395

The Authenticity and Modernity Party (Berber: Akabar en Yinetti ed Tatrara, KNT; Arabic: حزب الأصالة والمعاصرة; French: 'Parti de l'Authenticité et de la Modernité, PAM) is a Moroccan political party founded by Fouad Ali El Himma, advisor to King Mohammed VI and former interior minister, on 10 August 2008. From its foundation, it has been perceived by its opponents and the press as being backed and directed by the monarchy.[3][4]



The political party was founded in 2008.[5] Its first constitutive congress took place on 20 February 2009.[6] It was preceded by the Authenticity and Modernity parliamentary bloc, formed after the 2007 parliamentary election, and the think tank "Movement of All Democrats"[7] (Mouvement de Tous les Démocrats, MTD), both created and led by El Himma. "The Movement of All Democrats" creation communiqué was signed by a number of influential Moroccan public figures including: Aziz Akhenouch, Mustapha Bakkoury, Ahmed Akhchichine, Rachid Talbi Alami, Mohamed Cheikh Biadillah and three human rights activists who had served on Mohammed VI's Equity and Reconciliation Commission which investigated human rights abuses during Hassan II's reign.[8]

A number of political parties merged into PAM: Al Ahd, the National Democratic Party (PND), the Alliance of Liberties, the Environment and Development Party and the Citizens Initiative for Development.[9] The formation's main objective was to hit back at the rise of the Islamist Justice and Development Party (PJD).[1] It has been characterised as reform-oriented and modernist,[3] but lacks a clear political orientation. It positioned itself between the parties of the Istiqlal Party-led coalition and the oppositional PJD. Because of uncertainties about the organisation's ideology and political strategy, the PND and al-Ahd left it again a short time after they had joined.[1]

As a royal party aimed at maintaining the dominant role of the monarch, it can be compared to the Front for the Defence of Constitutional Institutions (FDIC) of the 1960s, the National Rally of Independents (RNI) of the 1970s and the Constitutional Union (UC) of the 1980s.[9] Despite being its factual leader, El Himma has not taken up a formal post in the party.[1]

Controversy and alleged palace involvement

Although Fouad Ali El Himma, a close friend of Mohammed VI, was key in the foundation of the party and many observers—including the American ambassador in Morocco—have described the party as "the palace party",[10] a Moroccan court sentenced politician Abdellah El Kadiri to a fine of 4 million Dirhams (US$500,000) after it judged that alleging that the Palace had a role in the foundation of the party amounts to slander.[11] Abdellah El Kadiri was president of one of the political parties that merged itself into the Authenticity and Modernity Party.[11]

Development since 2009

Mohamed Cheikh Biadillah was elected as the first secretary-general on 22 February 2009.[12]

In the 2009 communal elections, the party won the greatest number of seats, replacing the Istiqlal Party as the leading force.[13] Due to defections from other parties, the PAM became a major force in parliament. In October 2009, it took over the presidency of the House of Councillors.[14]

On the eve of the 2011 parliamentary election the PAM formed an alliance with seven other political parties of very disparate political outlooks[15] called the "Alliance for Democracy". The party won 47 out of 325 seats in the election, being the fourth party in the parliament.[16] After the victory of the Islamist PJD, the PAM announced it would go into opposition.[17]

The PAM won 102 seats in the October 2016 parliamentary election, an increase of 55, making it the second largest party.

Electoral results

Moroccan Parliament

House of Representatives
Election year # of
overall votes
% of
overall vote
# of
overall seats won
+/– Leader
2011 524,386 (#4) 11.1
47 / 395
Mohamed Cheikh Biadillah
2016 (#2) 25.82
102 / 395
Ilyas El Omari


  1. 1 2 3 4 James N. Sater (2012). New wine in old bottles: political parties under Mohammed VI. Contemporary Morocco: State, Politics and Society under Mohammed VI. Routledge. pp. 19–21.
  2. "The king's friend: A new leader emerges, but how credible will he be?". The Economist. 2 July 2009. Retrieved 6 January 2013.
  3. 1 2 The report: Morocco 2009 (Report). Oxford Business Group. 2009. p. 19.
  4. Michael J. Willis (2012). Politics and Power in the Maghreb: Algeria, Tunisia and Morocco from Independence to the Arab Spring. C. Hurst & Co. pp. 149–150.
  5. Bruce Maddy-Weitzman; Daniel Zisenwine (2013). Contemporary Morocco: State, Politics and Society Under Mohammmed VI. Routledge. p. 20. ISBN 978-0-415-69546-6. Retrieved 10 October 2014.
  6. "Organizations". Maroc. Retrieved 10 October 2014.
  7. Feliu, Laura; Parejo, Maria Angustias (2013). "Morocco: The reinvention of an authoritarian system". Political Regimes in the Arab World: Society and the Exercise of Power. Routledge. p. 73.
  8. Riley (18 January 2008). "Palace insider set to form new party". Embassy Rabat. Archived from the original on 4 February 2014. Retrieved 14 November 2013.
  9. 1 2 López García, Bernabé (2013). Morocco: regime and fuse. Political Regimes in the Arab World: Society and the Exercise of Power. Routledge. pp. 101–102.
  10. Kaplan (28 October 2009). "Palace party seeks to dominate the Moroccan political scene". Archived from the original on 16 December 2013. Retrieved 8 December 2013.
  11. 1 2 "القضاء يحسم في عدم دور القصر في تأسيس الأصالة والمعاصرة ويغرم القادري ب 400 مليون سنتيم لصالح الهمة". Alifpost. 7 December 2013. Retrieved 8 December 2013.
  12. "Moroccan new party elects first secretary general". People's Daily Online. 23 February 2009. Retrieved 6 January 2012.
  13. The report: Morocco 2009 (Report). Oxford Business Group. 2009. p. 14.
  14. Boukhars, Anouar (2011). Politics in Morocco: Executive Monarchy and Enlightened Authoritarianism. Routledge. pp. 76, 78.
  15. "A la veille des élections Alliance de huit partis politiques sans lien idéologique". Marpresse. 10 June 2011. Archived from the original on 25 April 2012. Retrieved 30 October 2011.
  16. "Morocco". European Forum. Retrieved 10 October 2014.
  17. "Party of Authenticity and Modernity Not to Participate in Upcoming Government". Morocco World News. 27 November 2011. Retrieved 6 January 2013.

Further reading

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