By Youssef El Kaidi
By Youssef El Kaidi
Morocco World News
Fez, May 20, 2013
Following the crisis over commissioning management of urban transport in the city of Fez, the workers of City Bus Company organized a march Saturday, May 18th, that roamed several streets demanding the departure of the company which came after a “suspicious deal.” The workers accuse the company of corruption in form of a set of violations and abuses such as not running the entire bus fleet, ghost workers, depriving buses of spare parts, delays in the payment of workers’ salaries, arbitrary expulsion of workers without any compensation etc.
The workers hold the ministry of interior and the mayor of Fez responsible for the imbalances of the company which affect the workers and bus users alike. The protesters called for an impartial, transparent, investigation to know those involved in the “suspicious” transaction and insist on the cancelation of the deal, as it “lacks legality and legitimacy.”
According to Fez news, the march was “successful at all levels” and the number of participants exceeded all expectations. The protestors leveled harsh criticism against the controversial Mayor of Fez and Secretary General of the Istiqlal Party (Independence party) Hamid Chabat and raised different slogans against him such as: “Fez is royal, not Chabat’s” and “people want to overthrow Chabat.”
In a video posted on YouTube, the protestors declared that they will organize another mass march on Sunday, June 23, 2013 to overthrow the mayor of Fez Hamid Chabat. The video features one of the participants (Abdelali Brek) announcing the organization of the march while the rest of the demonstrators were cheering and chanting slogans against Chabat.
The same video shows a UMT trade union representative accusing the Pasha of Fez and the head of Agdal urban area of obstructing the freedom of trade union membership, highlighting that Fez authorities refused to accept the file and grant deposit notice to the UMT trade union office formed by the workers of City Bus company, Fez. The UMT representative stressed that there is a blatant complicity between the Pasha of Fez, the head of the urban area of Fez and other parties that he didn’t reveal by name.