Hakim Benchammach.

An Authenticity and Modernity Party (MAP) elected member from the communal council of Guelmim has joined the Polisario Front.

The information, made public Sunday, was confirmed on the same day by the political party. In a statement issued on November the 11th, PAM said that it received an urgent letter from its office in the Guelmim-Oued Noun region.

The party was informed that Said B., who joined PAM in 2015 and had won communal elections on the same year, had «participated to an event, held abroad, among pro-Polisario activists».

«This individual left Morocco for months and is no longer linked to the missions for which he was elected. Moreover, he is no longer related to PAM in the Guelmim-Oued Noun region since 2015».

In the same statement, PAM announced that the «party decided to expel the person in question». The party headed by Hakim Benchammach took the opportunity to «congratulate» its elected officials and supporters in the region for their «commitment» and «vigilance» and for defending the «national cause».

Rare but not unique

In fact, having an elected MP from the Sahara change their positions and choose to defend the Polisario’s stance is a rare situation. Historically, many Moroccan nationals have went for leaving the Tindouf camps to join Morocco through Mauritania to reunite with their families instead. Moreover, even high ranked officials in the Polisario have chosen in the past to return to the Kingdom and start new lives there.

However, several Moroccan nationals from the Sahara participate, annually in the summer school of Boumerdes, an event held by the Polisario and sponsored by Algeria. This year, during the 9th edition of the yearly meeting, 24 Polisario supporters from the Kingdom’s southern provinces arrived on August the 2nd and 3rd in Algiers airport coming from Casablanca and Agadir.

But the most famous case of Moroccans who chose to defend the Polisario Front's thesis after defending the Moroccan one, is probably that of Mohamed Radi Ellili, former news anchor who used to work for state-owned channel, Al Oula. Last year, Mohamed Radi Ellili criticized the Moroccan position on French-channel France 24.