Culture is the foundation of our African identity and internalizes our traditions, values and exceptional pluralism. It is a unifying vector for peoples, said Monday in Salé, the Minister of Youth, Culture and Communication, Mohamed Mehdi Bensaid, at the opening of the African Ministerial Meeting for Culture.
The work of the Meeting MinAfrican Culture Festival, organized by the Ministry of Youth, Culture and Communication (MJCC), in partnership with the Organization of United Cities and Local Governments of Africa, opened on Monday, May 22, 2023 in Salé , marking the end of the programming of Rabat African Capital of Culture for the year 2022-2023.
Speaking at this major African cultural event, Mehdi Bensaid stressed that the cultural sector has undergone a major reform, the main reference of which was the 2011 constitution which places culture and the diversity of cultural and linguistic expressions at the heart of a modern Morocco which works to preserve its national identity and its promotion at national levels and internationally.
According to the Minister of Culture, the Kingdom is determined to federate the efforts made in each of the African countries, noting that this is a ” determination that emanates from the awareness that Moroccan identity is rich in its Amazigh, Arab-Islamic, Hassanian, Andalusian, Hebrew and Mediterranean affluents and its roots strongly attached to Africa, geographically, religiously, culturally, and artistically“.
He also highlighted the new strategic vision for the culture sector, “ a vision that aims to relaunch the cultural economy and lay the foundations for cultural industries and economic investment in the cultural sector“.
Bensaid notably affirmed that his ambition is to identify ” the ways and possibilities of refounding our cultural policies, and the way of thinking about culture in the public space, which is the field of participation and exchange, and a tangible, digital or symbolic product […] and cultural and artistic exchange, which is a call to coexistence, to strengthening the sense of identity and self-esteem“.
He recalled, in this sense, that the MJCC has worked to create a system whose aim is to support and accompany creation and creators, to contribute to the improvement of their conditions and to protect and enhance tangible and intangible cultural heritage.
The ministry also wanted to promote “ diplomacy and international cooperation in the cultural field, to guarantee the mobility of artists and their presence throughout the world and also to adopt good governance in the management of cultural affairs through the revision of laws and the creation of a legal arsenal capable of structuring cultural practice and integrating the economic potential” , he added.
As to the importance of this conclave, Bensaid stressed that this meeting has the ambition to discuss the means and possibilities of rethinking cultural policies by considering Culture as a public space, for sharing, for exchange, both physical and virtual or symbolic.
For the Minister, this is a strategic meeting dedicated to strengthening cultural cooperation between African countries, and is an opportunity to consolidate the efforts of African countries and capitalize on relevant experiences for a stronger cultural policy. He insists in particular on Morocco’s determination and commitment to implement the results of the meeting, as well as its openness to all proposals for collaboration in order to raise culture to the level of a powerful and profitable sector.
” It is together, through close cooperation, continues the Minister, that it is possible to develop and promote African cultural heritage in a more significant way on the international scene.“, says Bensaid.