DMM Achievements

The Kabul Process led to the design of National Priority Programmes (NPPs) for the period 2012-2014, which build on the Afghan National Development Strategy (ANDS). Municipalities are covered in two components of the NPP: Local Governance Programme in the Governance Cluster and National Urban Delivery Programme in the Infrastructure Development Cluster. DMM is responsible for the deliverables in the Governance Cluster related to Municipal Administration. Achievements beyond the deliverables in the National Priority Programme include improvements in recent years in the areas of good governance, capacity development, provision of urban services and municipal revenue enhancement.

Despite continuing security challenges and lack of government resources, these municipalities have begun to provide basic services. Especially the provincial capitals have received donor attention that has provided them opportunities most district municipalities have not had. DMM held bi-monthly donor coordination meetings on technical issues to coordinate these activities and monitored projects implemented by partners in municipalities. A survey of all 181 municipalities held in 2013 provides a sound basis for DMM to plan and coordinate further support.

DMM has put much effort into improving the legal and administrative framework for municipal service provision and revenue generation. A municipal reporting system that has been developed is currently implemented by 20 municipalities. The budgets of more than 146 municipalities and four newly created district municipalities were reviewed and processed in 2013.

Municipal Economic Development Profiles and Municipal Economic Development Plans were developed for 26 municipalities. In the course of infrastructure improvements, 1100km of streets were asphalted and gravelled in 2013 alone, 2000km of drainage and 1800 culverts constructed, 1910 km of sidewalk, 56 car parks, 14 municipal buildings, 129 public latrines, 9 bus stops, 49 public parks, and 27 km of retaining wall. In the same year, 3.500.000 m2 of public space were greened. Eight hundred and ninety solid waste bins were purchased and installed, landfills for 300m³ of waste prepared, and 5 million cubic meter of solid waste collected. As a result of its achievements, DMM obtained a seat on the Economic Committee of the Cabinet in 2013.

Registration of more than 500,000 plots in informal settlements in major municipalities has increased the municipal revenue in the last four years. The process was initiated by UN-Habitat in Kandahar and replicated by other donors across the country.

The boundaries of 17 cities have been marked in preparation of municipal elections, and Municipal Advisory Boards have been created in most of the capital cities as a temporary measure until Municipal Councils can be elected.

There have also been major achievements in the area of gender mainstreaming. Beyond an Anti-harassment Policy Guideline of IDLG for IDLG employees in the centre and provinces, the municipalities received Gender Mainstreaming Guidelines for Municipalities and are being supported in their implementation by a Gender Focal Group at DMM.

National mayors’ conferences both for provincial and district mayors have been conducted that provided constructive platforms for information exchange and networking, and for guidance to the municipalities. Based on a transparent evaluation procedure, mayors who had performed well received Letters of Appreciation from senior management and DMM, encouraging them to continue their efforts.