Two NGOs concerned with promoting and protecting the Kasbah of the Oudayas in Rabat have expressed their satisfaction with the ongoing reconstruction of the historic Moorish Cafe.
The Oudaya Association and the Oudaya Space Association, along with local residents, had initially expressed concern after local authorities destroyed the 98-year-old cafe.
However, the reconstruction of Rabat’s Moorish Cafe is “very satisfactory,” according to the NGOs, as the new building is based on the same original design.
The statement revealed that the main reason behind the demolishing of the cafe was an expert study conducted on the historical site. The study concluded that 90% of the site is at risk of collapsing and needs urgent renovation.
The NGOs’ inspections of the construction site confirmed that Rabat authorities are rebuilding the Moorish Cafe according to its original design and using the same type of materials, such as wood and tilework.
“This will make the cafe return to its original state in terms of form and content,” the statement said.
The NGOs assured citizens concerned with the protection of Morocco’s heritage that the historical monument “will remain a cultural memory” for Moroccans after its reconstruction.
The statement also condemned “those who attempted to politicize the demolishing of the cafe to achieve personal goals, away from the common interest.”
The NGOs issued the statement following a visit from the Rabat-based UNESCO Maghreb Director, Golda El-Khoury, to the construction site.
The visit aimed to ensure Rabat’s new Moorish Cafe is identical to the original building.
UNESCO is closely following the renovation project because the Kasbah of the Oudaya, where the cafe is located, is a World Heritage Site.
Morocco’s state media reported that El-Khoury was also satisfied with the ongoing reconstruction.