Rabat - Mohamed El Yaakoubi, the Wali (prefect) of Tangier-Tetouan-Al Hoceima region, has responded to claims that Al Hoceima is a forsaken city where no development projects have been made.
Rabat – Mohamed El Yaakoubi, the Wali (prefect) of Tangier-Tetouan-Al Hoceima region, has responded to claims that Al Hoceima is a forsaken city where no development projects have been made.
“There are two cities. The real Al Hoceima, and the one we see on social media,” said El Yaakoubi in an interview with le360 magazine.
The Wali explained that projects are underway in Al Hoceima, adding that what is being reported on social media gives the impression the city is “stricken.”
“Throughout the city, the projects under way total MAD 4 billion,” he said, adding that since the 2004 earthquake that struck Al Hoceima, MAD 25 billion have been invested to get the area back on its feet.
Among the ongoing projects, a hospital is being constructed with a budget amounting to MAD 374 million. Construction of the hospital kicked off in April. Meanwhile, the accommodation capacity and equipment for the regional oncology center is to be enhanced by this July.
The oncology center is meant to provide biopsy, radiotherapy and chemotherapy services to deliver the care patients need.
In addition to that, the Wali stated that six health facilities are to be constructed, while 24 existing others are going to be rehabilitated.
The area’s infrastructure will be boosted, the Wali said. Constructions of 100 kilometer long roads, with a budget of MAD 130 million, are on the verge of completion.
“During 2017, MAD 700 million was invested in road construction in the province of Al Hoceima,” he said.
Other projects include the construction of sports facilities, a stadium and three sports arenas in Al Hoecima, Ajdir and Issaguen, as well as 39 sports fields and neighborhood courts, and 14 educational institutions in 2017 with a budget that totals MAD 230 million.
According to the Wali, all these projects prove that the state, following the instructions of King Mohammed VI. It was the king who launched the mega-project titled “Al Hoceima Manarat Al Moutawasit” in October 2015, a year before the death of the local fish vendor of Mohsine Fikri. It was Fikri’s death which triggered the mass wave of protests in the city, which have been ongoing since then.
El Yaakoubi said the protests confirmed the King sought to meet the demands of the local population a year before the incident, and that the projects are underway to make it happen.
“Despite all these projects, some people are propagating misinformation on social media, claiming that nothing is being done, and this is completely wrong,” the Wali said.