Year
Contributor(s)Observatoire marocain des prisons (OMP) / independent experts

Daily life

All prisoners are entitled to spend at least one hour a day in the open air

yes
i

The prison service offers activities to prisoners

yes

Access to activities depends on the category of the prisoner. (See Organisation Section)

There are designated places for physical activities and sports

yes

The most common sports are football, handball and basketball.

There are designated places for cultural activities

yes

Cultural activities take place in the prison education centre. Workshops which are regularly offered are painting, drawing, literature and music.

Number and percentage of prisoners who participate in socio-cultural activities

24.9 % (20,844)
i
2018
/ DGAPR, "Activity Report 2018", p. 151.

This number corresponds to the total participation in cultural (7,737), artistic (7,347) and social (5,760) activities.1


  1. General Delegation for Prison Administration and Rehabilitation, “2018 Report”, 2019, p. 151 (in Arabic). 

Number and percentage of prisoners who participate in sport activities

34.9 % (29,239)
i
2018
/ DGAPR, "Activity Report 2018", p. 151.

Prisoners are not involved in the selection of activities. They may be able to make suggestions.

Prison staff are in charge of selecting prisoners to take part in activities. Religious activities are open to all.

Prison facilities have a library

yes

Work is compulsory

no

Number and percentage of prisoners who work

Data not disclosed

The total number of prisoners who are currently working is not documented. The prison administration reports that in 2018, 172 prisoners worked in production units for the DGAPR. They receive compensation for the work. 1


  1. General Delegation for Prison Administration and Rehabilitation, “2018 Activity report”, p. 44 (in Arabic). 

All prisoners are allowed to work

no

Job availability is minimal in Morrocan prisons.

The percentage of working prisoners is less than 5% in some local prisons.

Prisoners awaiting trial and class A prisoners are not eligible to work.

Labour as a punitive measure is prohibited

yes

Cleaning and repair work nevertheless make up some possible disciplinary measures.
See Disciplinary section.

Access to work depends specifically on the behaviour of the prisoner, the length of time served and the type of offence committed.

Only “trusted” prisoners (judged on good behaviour, history before imprisonment, type of offence committed, etc.) in the eyes of the prison administration have access to jobs. The prisoner needs to have completed a significant part of their sentence. Certain offences exclude the prisoner from access to work. For example, prisoners who are detained for drug trafficking.

Most prison jobs fall into the category of general services. Public sector industries are present in some prisons.

The prison service is in charge of job distribution. Prisoners can submit requests for the type of work they would like to carry out.

Prisoners are not entitled to employment contracts.

Maximum daily/weekly working hours are set, including at least one day of rest

yes

Weekly rest time and bank holidays are guaranteed by article 42 of the penitentiary law. The law does not state the maximum number of working hours, but specifies that “the hours worked must allow time for resting, eating, walking, educational activities and leisure time”.

Prisoners are paid for their work

yes

The rate of pay in prison is set by a joint order issued by the Minister of Justice and Minister of Finance. (Penitentiary law, article 45).
Half of the salary is saved and is available to the prisoner upon their release. The other half is available during their imprisonment.

Salaries are

significantly below the national minimum wage

The gap between salaries inside and outside of prison varies according to the nature and “the quality of the work”.

Their income is subject to social contributions

no

Health and safety standards applicable outside are respected in prison

yes
i

Prisoners have the right to join trade unions

no

Authority(ies) in charge of education and vocational training

different authorities

  • Ministry of National Education (ministère de l’Éducation nationale)

  • Ministry of Religious Endowments and Islamic Affairs (ministère des Habous1 et des Affaires islamiques)

  • National Agency for the Eradication of Illiteracy (Agence nationale de lutte contre l’analphabétisme)

  • Office for Vocational Training and Job Promotion (OFPPT), reporting to the Minister of Labour (ministère du Travail)


  1. Waqf - the Legal institution of Muslim law relating to inalienable charitable endowments.. (in French) 

Prisoners enrolled in educational training

5.4 % (4,529)
i
2017/2018 / DGAPR

This number corresponds to the number of prisoners who, during the school year 2017/2018, were enrolled in educational programmes and formal education. It represents an increase of 15% compared to the previous year.1


  1. General Delegation for Prison Administration and Rehabilitation “2018 report”, 2019, p. 47 (in Arabic) 

Education and vocational training is not devolved to external organisations. This is the responsibility of different government agencies and ministries of the Moroccan state.

Education is provided

in all facilities

Primary education and literacy classes are provided in all prisons. Secondary and further education is usually delivered at distance.

Education is available for all prisoners

yes

Class A prisoners do not have access to group study (literacy classes and primary education). Only distance learning is possible for these prisoners.

The prison service implements measures to fight illiteracy

yes

The Ministry of Religious Endowments and Islamic Affairs and the National Agency for the Eradication of Illiteracy take care of literacy classes.
Almost 17% of prisoners are illiterate (December 2018).1


  1. General Delegation for Prison Administration and Rehabilitation, “2018 report”, 2019, p. 145 (in Arabic). 

Prisoners are allowed to pass diplomas and entry examinations

yes

Prisoners can take the same exams in prison as they could outside. Exams take place in the prison education centre. They are supervised and organised by teachers from the national education sector.

Number and percentage of prisoners enrolled in vocational training

11 % (9,225)
i
31/12/2018
/ DGAPR, "Activity report 2018", p. 41.

Vocational training is provided

yes

Training in 43 different disciplines was provided in 2018. These courses were usually in the fields of construction or arts and crafts.
The most popular courses in 2018 were: electrical training, hairdressing, plumbing, fashion design, plastering, glass painting, IT and painting. These trainings were delivered by OFPPT.1
In May 2018 the prison administration opened a vocational training centre in the local El Arjat 2 prison. The centre has a capacity of 170 spaces. Training in various subjects are delivered here (electricity, plumbing, sewing).2


  1. General Delegation for Prison Administration and Rehabilitation (DGAPR), “2018 report”, 2019, p. 150 (in Arabic). 

  2. Ibid. p. iv (in Arabic). 

Vocational training is available for all prisoners

no

Prisoners awaiting trial and class A prisoners do not have access to vocational training.

Distance courses are available

yes

Five prisons (Tiflet 2, Khénifra, Oudaya, Toulal 2 et Aïn Sebaa 1) have dedicated e-learning spaces and equipment, as part of a program supported by the UNDP.1


  1. General Delegation for Prison Administration and Rehabilitation “2018 report”, 2019, p. 37 (in Arabic). 

Prisoners have access to computers

in some facilities

Prisoners with the necessary skills can provide training to other inmates, in particular classes in literacy, primary education and arts and crafts.

Prisoners are allowed to keep themselves informed regularly on public affairs

yes

Using their own money, prisoners can have books, magazines and newspapers delivered to the prison (Penitentiary law, article 122).

Prisoners have access to a television

yes

Prisoners have access to a television in the common area of the prison. Occupants of a cell (5 to 12 people) or dormitory (13 + people) share a television.

Prisoners have access to a radio

yes

Prisoners have access to the press

yes

Some class A prisoners do not have access to the press.

The prison service allows access to Internet

no

Politically sensitive information is censored.

The most common prisoner religion is Sunni Islam, just as in Moroccon society.

Prisoners are free to practice their religion and follow their beliefs

yes

Dedicated places of worship are available

in all facilities

There are chaplains in the prisons

yes

Chaplains (mainly Muslim, Christian and Jewish) have a strong presence in Moroccan prisons. The frequency of their visits depends on prisoner demand and religious holidays.

Policies for prevention of violent extremism and radicalisation have been implemented. These policies lead to the creation in 2017, of the Moussalaha program, started by a joint effort between the General Delegation for Prison Administration and Rehabilitation, the Rabita Mohammadia des Oulémas1, the National Human Rights Council (Conseil national des droits de l’Homme, CNDH) and the Mohammed VI Foundation (la Fondation Mohammed VI). Prisoners sentenced for acts of terrorism or extremism take part in this program. Participants numbered 50 in 2018.2

The prison administration also set up an awareness and information campaign about “tolerance culture and openness towards others”.


  1. Fondation created by King Mohammed VI for teaching and promoting Islamic studies. 

  2. General Delegation for Prison Administration and Rehabilitation “2018 Activity report”, 2019, p. 59 (in Arabic). 

Individuals or organisations from the outside are allowed to participate in prison activities

yes

Morrocan prisons have been open to external organisations since 2010.

Authorisations for external actors to take part in prison activities are provided by

the prison service

The main organisations authorised to enter prisons are local associations.
Athletes and artists also take part in one-off activities. The Moroccan Observatory of Prisons (L’Observatoire marocain des prisons) and the CNDH are in charge of legal assistance for prisoners in certain prisons.

External actors are not paid by the state nor another body.

Prisoners are allowed to make use of financial resources

yes

Financial resources are accessible

in an account

Prisoners can also request to open a savings account (livret individuel de caisse d’épargne). This account is kept by the bursar of the prison and returned to the prisoner upon their release (Article 106, Penitentiary Law ).

Destitute prisoners receive financial or in-kind support

no

Prisoners are allowed to discuss matters relating to their conditions of imprisonment

no

Prisoners have the right of association

no

Prisoners are involved in the production of radio programmes for the Idmaj station in the Oukacha prison in Casablanca. The programmes are supervised by a panel of experts and management from the prison administration. The radio project was set up thanks to a partnership between the CNDH, the Moroccan society of radio and television (SNRT), the Rabita Mohammadia des Oulémas and the Mohammed VI foundation for the rehabilitation of prisoners.1

In 2018 the prison administration set up a magazine “Cahiers du Prisonnier”. This magazine publishes the literary, artistic and intellectual creations of prisoners. It is organised by a committee made up of teachers and experts.


  1. General Delegation for Prison Administration and Rehabilitation , “2018 Activity Report”, p. 20.