February 7, 2023

Mohamed Najem Abhay, governor of the Guelmim-Ouednoon region, issued a global decision to rationalize irrigation water and ban the cultivation of both types of watermelons, red and yellow, in the territorial communes of the Guelmim region.

The governor of Guelmim and Adnun explained the ban on growing watermelons in the Guelmim district, according to the text of his decision seen by the Hespress newspaper, with the shortage of water resources recorded at the regional level as a result of successive years. drought and lack of rainfall, as well as the pursuit of optimal water management and the absence of depletion of the water channel.

This decision comes just days after a public opinion was published by civil society associations in Guelmim Province, sounding the alarm threatening the region’s oasis due to the spread of the phenomenon of watermelon cultivation as an alien agricultural way of life and the successive years of drought that accompanied it, in the absence of any – any realistic and tangible solutions that would reduce the extinction of oasis palms and the displacement of local populations.

The same associations stressed in a statement received by Hespress the need for the intervention of the responsible authorities, led by Wali Guelmima and Ednuna, to take urgent preventive measures and take a global decision to ban watermelons in a region similar to the regions affected by this type of cultivation.

On the same issue, El Batul Abladi, a parliamentary representative from the Helmim Ouednoun region, sent a written request to the Minister of Agriculture, Marine Fisheries, Rural Development, Water Resources and Forests to find out the measures that the ministry intends to take. take measures to protect the water course in the Tajit oasis and limit the spread of agriculture that depletes local water resources, especially the cultivation of watermelons.

In her question, Abladi cited condemnation of local civic activism in the Taghjid community for the failure of government agencies and the Ministry of Care of the Sector to engage with their repeated calls for the need to intervene to stop the risks and dire consequences of the spread of watermelon cultivation in the Tagjit oasis, given the destruction and depletion of the water channel by this type of investment.

The same parliamentarian pointed out that this agriculture will have a negative impact on the Tajijt region, as it lives in conditions of water scarcity, accompanied by a fragile environment and arid climate, which threaten it with huge water scarcity and structural failure to meet the needs of the population. its local population in terms of drinking water and irrigation water needed for palm cultivation.

It should be noted that international decisions adopted last year banned and legalized the cultivation of both types of watermelons, red and yellow, in a number of regions of the Kingdom, especially in Tata, Beni Mellal and Zagora.

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