Rabat - Former Head of Government Abdelilah Benkirane has joined the list of people who singled out Centrale Danone to defend the company and its farmers against the “damaging” consequences of the boycott campaign, sparking online backlash.
Rabat – Former Head of Government Abdelilah Benkirane has joined the list of people who singled out Centrale Danone to defend the company and its farmers against the “damaging” consequences of the boycott campaign, sparking online backlash.
Benkirane told Chouf TV that the boycott for political reasons is “understandable.” Benkirane, however, does not agree with the boycotters. “There is no reason to boycott the company that produces the milk because milk prices have not increased since 2013.”
Many Moroccans have been boycotting three major companies (Centrale Danone, Sidi Ali, and Afriquia gas) in protest against high prices since April 20. Benkirane asserted that the boycott is more of a political message than a social demand.
“The political messages of the boycott are clear and have arrived at their destination.”
Defending Centrale Danone, Benkirane said: “My housemaid’s sister is living in the countryside. She has a cow and she sells her milk to a cooperative for MAD 30 a day and it is thanks to this money she survives.”
He added that “the boycott should not last longer as the investors who bought this company do not reap the benefits they expected to get.”
Benkirane’s statement was not well received on social media, with commenters comparing his latest comments with a speech he delivered in 2011.
In the 2011 speech, Benkirane denounced the increase of prices on milk and dairy products in an open-air meeting with citizens.
“Today I saw some boys demanding 10 days of Danone boycott. I will be the first to boycott Danone,” said the former head of government in his speech.
He also asked the citizens if they do not know how to “prepare raib” (homemade yogurt). In his speech, he claimed that he had no hand in the increase of prices on dairy products, because the prices are liberalized.
Several social media users took to their Twitter to denounce Benkirane’s new comments, saying that he is contradicting his previous stance.
— Laila (@lailaamzir) June 4, 2018
“Uncle Benkirane, who taught citizens the techniques of boycott in 2011, is the same Benkirane who urges us to end the boycott today. But, Far, very far. #boycotting,” wrote a Twitter user.
“Mr. Benkirane in his latest statement urges Moroccans to stop the boycott. I would like to remind him that we know how to prepare raib very well.”
— Meryam (@PrMeryam) June 4, 2018
“How much money did they pay Benkirane for his statements,” said another.
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— Asmae Benlarbi (@Asmaeben7) June 4, 2018