The city of Agadir began welcoming tourists in October, but the prefecture is now on lockdown as COVID-19 cases continue to rise.
Local authorities in the prefectures and provinces of Agadir, Taroudant, and Tiznit, in Morocco’s central Souss-Massa region, extended lockdown measures this weekend in a bid to curb rising COVID-19 case counts.
The city of Agadir, one of Morocco’s top tourist destinations, received its first group of British tourists in October since the country entered a state of emergency in March. While the coastal city hoped to join Morocco’s tourism revival, the continuous spread of the pandemic stifled this dream.
On November 21, local authorities announced the closure of Souk El Had, the largest market in Agadir, and beaches every day at 3 p.m.
Late last month, Souss-Massa health authorities established a new field hospital in Agadir to host COVID-19 patients and support the existing local medical infrastructures, notably the Hassan II Hospital.
On Saturday, the local authorities of the Agadir Ida-Outanane prefecture announced a 15-day extension of the November 21 lockdown measures that aim to prevent the spread of COVID-19.
Agadir’s lockdown measures include a curfew from 9 p.m. to 6 a.m. Residents can only leave their homes for urgent medical or professional reasons. Cafes, restaurants, and shops have to close before 8 p.m. and public transportation is no longer available after 9 p.m. Accessing or leaving Agadir requires a special permit from local authorities that specifies the reason for travel.
The decision to prolong lockdown in Agadir followed the conclusion of regular monitoring operations of the evolution of the epidemiological situation and in light of the continued increase in cases.
Local authorities in Tiznit also announced a 15-day extension of lockdown measures from Saturday at 6 p.m.
The Tiznit province in the Souss-Massa region first implemented lockdown measures against the spread of COVID-19 on November 21.
The lockdown extension is in light of the worrying evolution of the epidemiological situation in the province.
On Sunday, public authorities in Taroudant, east of Agadir, announced a 15-day extension of the lockdown measures they implemented on November 23. The measures aim to strengthen the city’s prevention against the spread of COVID-19.
The extension comes into effect from Monday, December 7.
Given an increase in COVID-19 cases, travel to and from Taroudant requires exceptional authorization. Travel for health and professional reasons remains exempt. The city also upholds a ban on the broadcasting of football matches in the city. Hammams, gardens, public squares, and children’s play areas remain closed, and shops and cafes must shut their doors at 9:00 p.m.
Taroudant’s lockdown extension also includes strengthening residents’ compliance with preventive measures such as wearing face masks and social distancing, and applying the provisions of the law against offenders.