Amina El Mestari
A group of Susiya families emerged in the scientific and technological modernization aspect, after its members challenged their reality associated with either tribal restrictions closed on themselves, refusing modernization or openness to the new environment created by colonialism.
Al-Hajj Al-Qassidi, he is Muhammad Ahmad Obihi, born in 1929, and he was known among his friends as “Al-Qasidi” because he used to tell stories and sing poems for them, so they called him Al-Qasidi, and he liked this nickname, so he took it as a nickname for his family.
Al-Qasidi laid the first brick for the economy in Souss. Rather, he was one of the first families to break these restrictions. He rose up against self-contained habits, and came out of his father’s robes, to breathe the air of the new beginning of society. He studied, learned, and rose to become a teacher. Then he soon changed direction. To become a bank employee.
Al-Qasidi was not only an employee, but he was involved in national action in the glory of his youth, he joined the Istiqlal Party, and he was distributing leaflets and delivering messages, and he was arrested and tortured by the French occupier in 1952, and he spent a year and a half in detention, after which he was exiled to the ovens of the Lesser Atlas, and he died By six months, to return to Agadir, where he spent a period of emptiness and social isolation, because he remained under the supervision of the colonial forces ready to accuse everyone who mixed with him of national action.
After a while, Al-Qassidi will change direction, becoming an employee of the “Brill” gasoline distribution company, and during his work in it he was able to save an amount of money, which will enable him to put his foot in the world of “business”, to take his first steps in the world of economics.
This open-minded Soussi was able to lay the first building blocks of the Sousse economy, and to disrupt the commercial system in the Sahel of Sais, in which the Fascists excelled. He was the first man to personally establish the Chamber of Commerce and Industry before it became an institution in this legal form for the professional chambers of the state.
Al-Kassidi’s father was a well-known merchant in Agadir Oufella who held simple partnerships in his trade “fish, cheese…” He refused to educate his children, and warned them against learning, and from school and everything that comes from it, especially the one in which the French and foreigners study. This simple merchant fears, That his children be subjected to “Christianization”. However, from a young age, Al-Qasidi saw the opposite of his father’s tendencies, so he secretly registered himself in the school, and when the father, Ahmed Obih, learned that his son Muhammad was on the list of students for the first academic season in the first school created in Agadir, he had a sharp fit of anger, and beat Muhammad severely, warning him To turn away from the school of foreigners, from which nothing but evil came.
Despite the share of torture that Al-Qasidi received from his father, he remained determined to make his way, refusing to “live in the robes of Obehi.” He lived in Agadir Ovala and had to cover the distance between it and Talberget daily on foot, for 3 years, enduring the father’s anger until he obtained the primary certificate, then studied at two French institutes by correspondence, after which he entered the Naval School and was the first of his class.
With the passage of time and the Sussians accepting the issue of educating their children, Muhammad al-Qasidi convinced his father of the need to educate his brothers, especially his sisters, and with great difficulty, Hajj Obihi accepted what was one of his staunchest opponents, but on a strict condition, which is that al-Qasidi takes care of his sisters financially, and that he monitors their movements and takes care of them.
Al-Hajj Al-Qassidi’s brothers were not less interested in science. His beloved brother was able to obtain a license in law, and his sisters proved their worth and genius. To be the first nationwide, at a time when teaching girls was unacceptable.
Al-Qasidi established a dyeing company with a partner called Abdallah Olhassan, left him to manage it, and moved with his family to Marrakech to work in the “Brill” petrol company, after losing his mother in the 60’s earthquake that struck the Kasbah of Agadir Oufella, leaving pain and heartbreak in himself, and he returned after a while To Agadir, bringing with him savings that enabled him to become the main supplier of gasoline to the south, benefiting from the experience he had in Marrakesh.
Al-Bashir Ahshmoud, who lived with Hajj Al-Qassidi, tells that the latter was able to establish the “Group of Six” laying the first building block of the economy in Sous, in partnership with “Al-Hussein Achenkali, Al-Hajj Ibrahim Bensalah, Al-Hajj Abdullah Al-Dhahabi, Al-Hajj Ali Bonnet, and Al-Hajj Al-Hussein Tadrarine.” The group has become one of the leaders of economic projects in Souss, and this modern economic structure cannot be fragmented by talking about one of them in isolation from the other.
Ahchmoud, one of the men of Sousse who lived with these six and followed the movements of the economy in Sousse and its development, tells that the members of the group became the founders of a new banking system, which extended to the borders of Rabat and Casablanca, so that the group of six became a shareholder in the Moroccanization of the Dutch bank, along with the BMAO Bank, and we have tracked during In the previous series, how the Susiya families started with simple projects related to selling eggs, wool, and gas shops, relying on the families and those close to the tribe, but the group of six appeared more modern and modern.
“Group 6,” as al-Bashir tells, invested in major economic fields, such as the large mills of Anzi north of Agadir, the Aveiro Marouk factory, the Amadir factory, the Sokoprom factory for marine products…, and they established the first fishing company on the high seas in 1973 with the Japanese and the Moroccan state (the Moroccan General Fishing Company).
Al-Bashir Ahchmoud, member of the Chamber of Commerce and Industry, currently the first vice-president of the Chamber of Commerce, Industry and Services of the Souss-Massa region, and one of the frameworks of the Al-Kassidi group, confirms that the leader of the Group of Six, immediately after the earthquake in the city of Agadir in 1960, conducted a group of economic activities such as fuel and others, and that Hajj Al-Kassidi is considered One of the founders of the Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Agadir and Tarfaya in 1963, and he was assigned the presidency of the Chamber from 1963 to 1972.
Ahshmoud added that the group contributed to the Moroccanization of the Dutch Bank, the establishment of the Techno Building Company and the Growth Road Company, and the construction of the first hotel in Agadir after the earthquake, and the Kamal Hotel, which abbreviates the names of Muhammad al-Qasidi and al-Hussein Achenkali.
In the year 1974 he joined the group of the six Moulay Larbi Chtouki and Hajj Mohamed Belhabib Baamrani and bought a group of Barouk mills (Anza mills, Rabat mills, Sale mills, Marrakech mills and its branches in Casablanca and Meknes. Al-Kassidi became president of the Association of Mill Owners, as he was behind the construction of the specialized institute for training In the mill industry Thus, we notice that the economy of Sousa expanded and modernized to spread its wings in Casablanca and reach the city of Meknes, one of the castles of the Fassis.
Al-Qasidi was fond of football, and he was one of the first founders of the Al-Hassaniyah team, after the name of Crown Prince Moulay Al-Hassan, and he played in its ranks, then became president of the team. As for the political level, Al-Hajj Al-Qasidi was elected as a parliamentarian in 1970.
Al-Kassidi died in Rabat in 2010 after a life full of giving, during which he managed to establish the economy of Sousse on a modern global track, as he contributed to the national economy. He died leaving behind a successor of educated men and women, with degrees in economics.