Quake-hit Amzmiz braces for protests amidst ongoing recovery crisis

Quake-hit Amzmiz braces for protests amidst ongoing recovery crisis

With mounting tension in quake-hit Amizmiz, the Coordination Committee representing earthquake victims has issued a call for a large-scale protest, scheduled for Tuesday. 

This decision comes following an emergency meeting convened on the 2st, where a coalition of civic activists gathered to address the  continuously shifting conditions within the camps and the dire living circumstances of those affected.

A noteworthy concern brought forward was the government’s ongoing lack of transparency and clarity, as revealed in the recent statement by the Interministerial Committee regarding the reconstruction program. 

The committee expressed their bewilderment at the ambiguity in the government’s communication and the convoluted procedures outlined by local authorities in implementing directives of the King.

The committee strongly criticized the continued neglect of regional and local officials in addressing the struggles and needs of those affected by the earthquake.

This neglect of the affected populations at both regional and local levels is an issue they are determined to rectify.

The Coordination Committee issued a firm condemnation of the exclusion of a segment of affected individuals from receiving urgent aid. 

In an interview with MoroccoLatestNews English, Najia Ait Mhand said, “the earthquake victims are living in extremely difficult conditions, especially in this harsh weather. It’s a situation that is challenging for anyone to endure. We are still trying to provide tents for many of the affected people. While setting up tents is only a temporary solution, it was considered after the earthquake, and it is not suitable for long-term living.”

Ait Mhand further added that “the coordination committee has been in touch with local authorities, and we organized demonstrations 15 days ago, attended by 600 people. A committee representing the coordination committee also met with the local governor to convey the issues people are facing, including the absence of dedicated tents for schoolchildren so they can continue their education. Some students have not returned to school, and some have even fainted. The tents are inadequate for both students and teachers.”

“We are facing a problem with the absence of mobile hospitals and medical services. If anyone needs medical attention in any village, they have to travel to Amizmiz. I’ve heard a story of a woman giving birth in a tent,” she said 

“The conditions are indeed challenging, with tents being uprooted due to the strong winter weather. There are also villages threatened by falling rocks, which could lead to further disasters.”

As for humanitarian aid, Ait Mhand explained that there was no organized distribution system, and we initially received surplus perishable goods like milk in the early weeks. However, “the supply of aid has now dwindled.”

“Emergency aid is also a problem. Only a small percentage of the victims have received it, and it is insufficient to cover all the expenses,” she said.


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