Morocco’s King sacks cabinet members, top officials for poor performance


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Morocco’s King Mohammed VI dismissed the ministers of education, planning and housing and health, as well as other officials “for failing to improve the economic situation in a region” amid protests.

According to an official investigation committee set up by the king in June, a large-scale development programme in Al Hoceima launched in 2015 were lingering due to delays.

Protests erupted in the Rif region around the northern city of Al-Hoceima last October, triggered by the death of a fishmonger whose produce was confiscated by police.

The man’s crushing to death in a garbage truck during a confrontation with police became a symbol of corruption and official abuse.

The protests, the largest in Morocco since the days of the 2011 “Arab Spring”, were directed at the government and the king’s entourage rather than the monarch himself.

The king’s move came as protest leader Nasser Zefzafi and 29 others accused of organizing demonstrations in the northern region went on trial in Casablanca.

In July the king pardoned dozens of people arrested in the protests and blamed the failure of local officials to quickly implement development projects for stoking public anger.

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