Morocco Opposition Leader Resigns

Casablanca – Moroccan opposition chief Ilyas El Omari personally announced his decision to resign from the party’s leadership.

Speaking at a Tuesday press conference, he told reporters that his resignation from the Authenticity and Modernity Party (PAM) was “unilaterally decided.”

El Omari cited personal reasons for his departure, adding that it was a final and irreversible decision.

He expressed his dissatisfaction with the performance of his party in governing offices and said he resigned to take responsibility for the troubles facing PAM, including last year’s election defeat, the party said.

The party was beaten in legislative polls in October, but more than doubled its number of seats in the new parliament.

El Omari was elected PAM Secretary General in January 2016 and vowed to lead his party to win the parliamentary elections. In the polls, his party came second behind the ruling Justice and Development Party (PJD).

A PAM statement released late on Monday said El Omari “assumes the political responsibility” of the party’s decline, particularly after the election.

El Omari is also president of the regional council for the restive north and media reports said his resignation was partly linked to unrest in the neglected Rif region, which has been shaken by weeks of protests and violence this year.

“Given his political responsibility as Secretary General who has supervised the different phases, which the party has undergone for over a year, including elections, El Omari handed in his resignation from the position of PAM’s secretary general, and underlined that he will remain, as he has always been, an activist within the party and its bodies,” PAM said in the statement.