The month of Ramadan is fast approaching. In a few days, Muslims in Morocco will fast from dusk until dawn. In Morocco, preparations are already well underway. Return of Tarawih prayers, promotions in supermarkets, television programs… Nothing is left to chance.
The holy month will begin on April 3, 2022 and will have 29 days, like the previous five years, according to Moroccan astronomer Hicham El Aissaoui.
It is the first Ramadan after a return to normal life after two years of the pandemic. A relief for restaurateurs, traders but above all for Moroccans.
In recent days, Morocco vibrates to the rhythm of a frenetic preparation to welcome the holy month in the best conditions.
Since yesterday, Wednesday, bars and pubs have closed their doors, the sale of alcohol has stopped and the ftour buffet menus are back in service, to the delight of restaurateurs who have experienced an unprecedented crisis following the restrictions linked to the coronavirus in recent years.
That’s not all, since in supermarkets, the special promotions of the month are already available to help housewives to prepare well.
Expected return of Tarawih prayers
Another fact impatiently awaited by Moroccans, the return of the prayer of the Tarawihs, which have not been authorized since the appearance of the coronavirus pandemic in the Kingdom.
Contacted by MoroccoLatestNews UK, Dr Tayeb Hamdi, a physician, health policy and systems researcher, said he was in favor of reopening mosques for Tarawih people during Ramadan.
“Mosques should open for Tarawihs during the month of Ramadan, but under conditions”, believes Dr. Tayeb Hamdi. According to him, these are closed spaces, which, scientifically, are the cause of 95% of contaminations with the virus. “In order to avoid these contaminations, it is necessary to have a reduced number of people, to be masked and to spend as little time as possible”he recommends, seeing no reason to ban the execution of Tarawihs in mosques during the month of Ramadan.
In this sense, the question came to parliament. Indeed, the deputy of the Constitutional Union Noureddine Hirouchi sent a written question to the Minister of Habous and Islamic Affairs, about the possibility of authorizing tarawih and opening ablution rooms.
The parliamentarian pointed out that the epidemiological situation in Morocco is improving thanks to compliance with health measures and the vaccination campaign.
Noureddine Hirouchi adds that the citizens, deprived of this religious ritual for two consecutive years, hope to be able to return to the mosques this year and are impatiently awaiting the government’s decision.
Control of market prices during Ramadan
Faced with soaring prices of basic necessities and the anger of Moroccans who are worried about the approach of the month of Ramadan, the Moroccan government is focusing on controlling and monitoring the food supply to meet household needs. .
As the demand for food products experiences an upward trend each Ramadan, the government intends to closely monitor the food supply situation in Moroccan markets as well as control the quality and prices of products.
The relevant departments are responsible for controlling and monitoring the food supply across Morocco to ensure its best conditions and meet the purchasing power of Moroccan households.
Meanwhile, Morocco’s National Food Security Office (ONSSA) will focus on ensuring food quality and plans to seize products that are unfit and unlabeled for consumption.
The Ministry of Agriculture, Maritime Fisheries, Rural Development and Water and Forests ensures the regular supply of consumer foods to the markets, in particular flour, tomatoes, dates, meat and eggs, according to a statement.
Regarding legumes, the current stock is sufficient to cover the needs of the month of Ramadan for those of the most consumed categories (chickpeas, lentils and beans).
Tomatoes grown in greenhouses, mainly 90% from the Sous-Massa region, should cover the needs of Ramadan. The government estimates that tomato production will be sufficient for the holy month.
For onions, the prices observed on the wholesale market during the month of March are stable and similar to the same period last year. Potato demand will also be largely met during Ramadan, the government assured.
At the same time, the supply of dates for the coming month will be ensured by stocks from national production, which reached 160,000 tonnes, up 12% compared to the previous season, and by imports made before Ramadan.
Date prices are expected to remain at their usual levels, varying according to the quality and origin of the product. As for citrus production, it increased by 15% compared to last year, while prices fell by 39% compared to the same period, i.e. 2.5 MAD per kg on the wholesale market. .
The banana market is supplied by local production and imports, while prices on the wholesale market are lower than in 2021. Apple production has increased in recent years while prices have fallen by 18% compared to 2021. compared to last year.
The supply of milk and dairy products is able to cover the average demand estimated at nearly 105 million liters during Ramadan, the government explained, stressing that milk prices are stable.
For butter, market supply will be well assured to meet national needs, the statement added.
The quantity of red meat (beef, lamb and goat) available for the months of April 2022 remains sufficient to cover the consumption of Moroccan households with normal prices.
With regard to white meat, the planned supply for the month of April will be sufficient as well as the planned supply of eggs, fish and seafood.
The cereals market currently relies on a stock of soft wheat to cover more than four and a half months, this is due in particular to the pace of imports following the suspension of customs duties on soft wheat and the flat-rate premium system.
The production and importation of rice cover more than eight months of household consumption needs.
The supply of vegetable oils on the national market remains normal, the government pointed out that edible oils are mainly supplied by imports of crude oil and are directly impacted by the increase in international prices.
Sugar production shows sufficient supply to cover consumption needs during Ramadan as available stocks can cover several months of consumption while prices remain stable.
Moroccan television unveils its program schedule
As tradition dictates, Ramadan is an opportunity to kick off a new grid. Adapted programming, conducive to this month of spirituality and in tune with the new rhythm of life for viewers.
In this sense, several channels have unveiled their programs starting with Al Aoula which thus mobilizes all its teams to meet the expectations and requirements of all its viewers.
Al Aoula intends to consolidate its leadership after having doubled its audience over the past two years. The cast is prestigious and the stories close to the concerns of our viewers, always with a view to proximity.
Thus, Aoula proposes for this Ramadan 2022 a program “rich and diversified thanks to the introduction of new concepts marked by the clear improvement in production value”, and a total of six new series.
According to the management of the first channel, humor will continue to occupy “a place of choice”in particular with short ftour programmes, as well as comic TV films, by distributing everything over the three traditional phases: “before ftour”, “prime ftour” and “the rest of the evening”.
For its part, the chain 2M affirms that it proposes this yeara skilful mix of classic formats and original creations, alternating between comedy and drama”. The sitcom “Zenqat Assaada” will bring a touch of good humor and laughter to the ftour table, through wacky dialogues and incredible situations.
In addition to numerous TV movies scheduled throughout the holy month and covering different genres and themes, viewers will be able to follow several Moroccan series such as “Zettat” with Mohammed El Khiari in the lead role, and “Safi Salina” which will feature the duo Samia Akariou and Rhany Kabbaj in a bittersweet couple story against the backdrop of a pandemic.
Other works of fiction such as “Al Maktoub” will also honor stars of the small screen, Meriem Zaime, Amine Naji and Dounia Boutazout in intriguing stories and acutely dealing with real issues of Moroccan society.