Al Hoceima Development Projects Sacked Ministers Will Not Face Charges for

Rabat – It appears that the King’s move to sack three ministers and two high officials for negligence in overseeing Al Hoceima’s development projects is the only punishment they will receive. In terms of legal sanctions, the King’s attorney general, Mohamed Abdel Nabawi, has found that, despite their projects’ massive slowdowns, they are not guilty of any crimes.In a report presented to the King late October, the Court of Auditors criticized the sluggishness and lack of coherence and cooperation of the ministers responsible for managing the development project. The King responded by sacking them.“I am disappointed in their performance at their respective ministries, and I would never again entrust them with any public missions,” stated the King after reading the report. His attorney general Abdel Nabawi agrees. “Court of Auditors President Driss Jettou’s report was accurate and clear when he revealed the errors observed in the project,” he said during a press conference in Rabat on November 7.However, Abdel Nabawi drew from “his expertise as the Attorney General” to say that “we must distinguish between imbalances in management and crimes.”For the King’s attorney, the dysfunctions in Al Hoceima project are “not embezzlements, but rather imbalances that had to do with the lack of respect for deadlines in the implementation of projects.”Thus, the report is “free of criminal charges” and does “not require any judicial review before the criminal justice.”The Court of Auditors’ report indicated that the development project “did not meet a strategic vision integrated and shared by all stakeholders.”The project’s committee was unable to mobilize the other partners for “actual contribution and reactivity,” nor was it capable of giving “the necessary momentum to launch the program on a solid foundation.” This, the implementation of the project suffered a slow start.From the signing of the project’s framework convention in 2015 until February 2017, the Court of Auditors noted that most stakeholders at both central and locals levels experienced significant delays in carrying out their duties.By the end of 2016, of the total 644 projects planned, there were only five fully implemented projects, at a budget of MAD 146.8 million, and 45 ongoing projects at MAD 565 million.