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Local Coordination in Figuig ‘disappointed’ after first meeting on water management

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The Local Coordination for Advocacy on Figuig Issues voiced their disappointment after attending the first session of dialogue aimed to discuss Law 83-21, especially the “East for Distribution” provision.

The coordination hinted that “the meeting did not meet their expectations and sparked frustration among locals.”

The dialogue session, which was held on Thursday at the Figuig prefecture headquarters in Bouarfa, was chaired by the governor of the Eastern Region, in the presence of the prefect of Figuig province and the Director of Local Public Networks at the Ministry of the Interior, Mustapha El Habti.

“The meeting was intended to be a dialogue to dispel the residents’ concerns about the entry of these companies, but the participants felt that they were not given enough time to express their views comfortably and convey their message to the central representative of the Ministry of the Interior,” reads the statement.

Figuig’s Local Coordination found the meeting disappointing, offering nothing new about Law 83-21 for residents. They believe “it was merely an opportunity to promote the law.”

“The residents’ real fear stems from their awareness and concerns regarding the specifics of the projects set to be outlined in the implementation decrees,” explained the coordination.

It further highlighted that “all the reassurances provided by the interveners amount to nothing more than undocumented and unsubstantiated talks.”

“The depiction of the water supply management by the local council should be very bleak, scary, and unrealistic to convince officials of the board’s decision to join the regional company,” said the statement.

Figuig residents “reiterate their refusal to join the East Distribution Group of territorial communities,” according to the Local Coordination, and “demand an immediate withdrawal from this group,” emphasized the statement.

The Coordination said that “the protesters and dissenting councilors declared their boycott of all local management board activities.”

They also condemned what they perceived as “the selective approach adopted by the official media in covering the proceedings of the meeting, favoring the party supporting the company’s access to the Figuig community exclusively while disregarding the views of the representatives of the protesting residents.”

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