His Majesty King Mohammed VI chaired today September 14, 2023, at the Royal Palace in Rabat, a working meeting devoted to activating the emergency program for rehousing disaster victims and caring for the categories most affected by the Al Haouz earthquake, which was the subject of Royal Instructions during the working session presided over by the Sovereign on September 9, 2023.
This meeting follows on from the series of measures ordered by the Sovereign, aimed at mobilizing all resources, with the necessary speed and efficiency, to help stricken families and citizens, and in particular to deploy rehabilitation and reconstruction measures as quickly as possible, in the localities affected by this natural disaster of unprecedented proportions.
This first version of the rehousing program presented to the Sovereign, and which was prepared by the inter-ministerial commission set up pursuant to the High Royal Instruction, covers some 50,000 totally or partially collapsed homes in the five provinces affected.
It consists, on the one hand, of emergency temporary rehousing measures, in particular through adapted formulas for on-site accommodation in structures designed to withstand the cold and bad weather; or in reception sites equipped with all the necessary amenities. In addition, the State will grant emergency aid of 30,000 dirhams (approximately USD 3,000) to the households concerned.
In this respect, the Sovereign drew the attention of the competent authorities to the extremely high priority of the rehousing operation, which must be carried out under the necessary conditions of fairness and constant attention to the needs of the populations concerned.
On the other hand, the program consists of immediate reconstruction actions, which will be deployed after preliminary expertise operations and land preparation and stabilization work. To this end, direct financial assistance of 140,000 dirhams has been earmarked for totally collapsed dwellings, and 80,000 dirhams to cover rehabilitation work on partially collapsed homes.
His Majesty the King also insisted on the need for the reconstruction operation to be carried out on the basis of specifications and under technical and architectural supervision in harmony with the region’s heritage and respecting its unique architectural features.
During the same working session, His Majesty the King reiterated His High Instructions for a strong, swift and proactive response, while respecting the dignity, customs and heritage of the populations. In addition to repairing the damage caused by the earthquake, these measures will also involve launching a well-thought-out, integrated and ambitious program for the reconstruction and general upgrading of the affected regions, both in terms of infrastructure reinforcement and improving the quality of public services.
This multi-faceted program will primarily mobilize the State’s own financial resources and those of public bodies, and will also be open to contributions from private players and associations, as well as from brotherly and friendly countries that so wish, and to whom His Majesty the King reiterates, on this occasion, the Kingdom of Morocco’s most sincere thanks.
During the meeting, His Majesty the King also raised the equally crucial issue of immediate care for orphaned children, who today find themselves without family or resources. The Sovereign has asked that these children be registered and granted the status of wards of the nation.
Also, in order to lift them out of this situation of distress and protect them from all risks and all forms of fragility to which they may unfortunately be exposed after a natural disaster, His Majesty the King ordered the government to launch the adoption process, as quickly as possible, of the bill necessary for this purpose.
Through the vision and action of its Sovereign, Morocco is once again demonstrating the resilience that characterizes it, enabling it to face up to the trials and challenges with resolve, wisdom and determination, thanks to the strength of its institutions and the solidarity and generosity of its people.
It should be emphasized that the meeting chaired by His Majesty the King, devoted to activating the emergency program, is a strong and ambitious Royal response. We’re not just talking about reconstruction, but about a colossal program in which one of the top priorities is to rehouse all disaster victims.
The working meeting was attended by the Head of Government, Mr. Aziz Akhannouch, Advisor to HM the King, Mr. Fouad Ali El Himma, the Interior Minister, Mr. Abdelouafi Laftit, the Endowments and Islamic Affairs Minister, Mr. Ahmed Toufiq, the Economy and Finance Minister, Ms. Nadia Fettah, the National Territory Planning, Land Planning, Housing and City Policy Minister Ms. Fatima Ezzahra El Mansouri, the Minister Delegate to the Minister of Economy and Finance, in charge of the Budget, Mr. Faouzi Lekjaa, as well as Lieutenant General Mohammed Berrid, Inspector General of the FAR and Commander of the Southern Zone.