In the Constitution of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan of 2004, municipalities are covered in Article No. 141: “To administer city affairs, municipalities shall be established. The mayor and members of municipal councils shall be elected through free, general, secret and direct elections. Matters related to municipalities shall be regulated by law”. A municipal law that has been developed to supersede the municipal law of 2000 awaits approval by parliament, and it has not been possible yet for technical and financial reasons to conduct municipal elections.

All in all 8,200 staff members including the mayors work in the 153 municipalities managed by GDMA, ranging from district municipalities that have ca 20 employees to provincial capitals with ca 1000 employees. Paroon as the smallest provincial capital (Nuristan) has six staff members, while the largest capitals, Herat and Kandahar, have ca 1100 and 950 staff respectively.