No more animal traction in Casablanca. Carts pulled by donkeys or mules are deemed too dangerous for traffic, let alone animal abuse. A bad image does not want to get rid of the Moroccan metropolis which now defends itself as a “smart city”.
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No more pack animals painfully pulling a cart through the streets of Casablanca, Morocco. Too slow, they produce chaotic traffic and cause accidents. And it is clear that donkeys and mules live poorly in urban areas. “It was causing a lot of traffic problems, explains Moulay Ahmed Afilal, deputy mayor of Casablanca. We made this decision because we cannot sell Casablanca as a ‘smart city’, an intelligent city, when the reality we see in the streets is different.”
“In addition, physically, they are in a terrible state. When the animal does not move forward, we start hitting it.”Moulay Ahmed Afilal, deputy mayor of Casablanca
Amine heard the news. With his horse, he does the bush taxi [taxi collectif inter-urbain] for outlying areas. He just hopes not to be left behind. “I heard that, I can’t help it. I just hope they will help us”, he confides distraught. A disarray that is reflected in all these small street trades.
What will become of the scavengers, bush taxis and other itinerant vegetable sellers? “I live from the sale of vegetablesAz explains who has been criss-crossing working-class neighborhoods for twenty years. If they pay me a scooter, I’ll take it!”, he throws.
Ahmed Afilal is committed to supporting them in this transition. But the solution will not be scooters. “Casablanca residents complain about scooters in traffic. There are other alternatives”, assures the deputy mayor, who evokes the electric bicycle or even these small electric vans which are starting to come out. Casablanca imposes itself as a “smart city” and in a smart city, donkeys no longer have their place.