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					                      UN-HABITAT
        Regional Office for Africa and Arab States




Somalia Urban Development Programme (SUDP)

                Final Evaluation Report

                        13 April 2008




                       Alan J. Taylor*




* pondofalan@yahoo.co.uk +254 07 10 28 10 14 +44 13 54 69 16 22
                                      CONTENTS



Executive Summary                                                      4


INTRODUCTION                                                           9
     Conduct of the Evaluation                                        10

DESIGN AND EVOLUTION OF THE SUDP                                      11
     The Somali Urban Context                                         11
     Antecedents to the SUDP                                          12
     SUDP Design and Implementation                                   14

PROGRAMME COMPONENTS                                                  16
    Urban Planning                                                    16
    The Implementation of Local Projects                              17
    Cadastral Work                                                    20
    Municipal Financial Management                                    21
    Legal Aspect of Land Management                                   22
    Solid Waste Management                                            23
    Settlements for Internally Displaced People                       24
    Codes and Norms for Urban Planning and Building                   25
    Gender                                                            25
    Publications                                                      26
    Coordination of International Contributions to the Urban Sector   26

CAPACITY DEVELOPMENT                                                  29

THE MANAGEMNT OF RELATIONSHIPS                                        30
     Relationships with Partner Organizations                         30
     Relationships with Government Counterparts                       33

PROGRAMME PLANNING                                                    34

PROGRAMME MANAGEMENT                                                  35
    Financial Management                                              35
    The Management of Delays                                          36
    Human Resources Management                                        38

PRINCIPAL CONCLUSIONS                                                 42
      The Strategic Approach                                          42
      Important Lessons                                               47
      Inter-Institutional Relationships                               49

RECOMMENDATIONS FOR FUTURE PROGRAMMES                                 50

List of Annexes                                                       56




                                          2
                                   ANNEXES

  1. Map of Somalia showing distribution of SUDP components               57

  2. UN-Habitat Somalia Project Status, March 2008                        58

  3. Progress from Local Projects to Urban Planning                       59

  4. SUDP Publications 2005-2008                                          61

  5. SUDP Staff Costs 2005-2008                                           67

  6. Persons Interviewed                                                  68

                                    ACRONYMS
AoC         Agreement of Cooperation
CRD         Centre for Research and Dialogue
CTA         Chief Technical Advisor
DDC         District Development Committee
DFID        Department for International Development (UK)
DRC         Danish Refugee Council
EU          European Union
FAO         Food and Agricultural Organisation of the United Nations
GAVO        General Assistance and Volunteers Organisation
GIS         Geographical Information System
GLTP        Local Governance and Leadership Training Programme
IDP         Internally Displaced People
ILO         International Labour Organisation
LICUS       Low Income Countries Under Stress
MPW         Ministry of Public Works
NC          Neighbourhood Committee
NGO         Non-Governmental Organisation
NOVIB       Netherlands Organisation for International Assistance
NRC         Norwegian Refugee Council
PAR         Public Administrative Reform
PDA         Personal Digital Assistant
PIDAM       Puntland Institute of Development Administration and Management
PMO         Programme Management Officer
PSD         Programme Support Division (of UN-Habitat)
ROAAS       Regional Office for Africa and Arab States (of UN-Habitat)
SAACIID     Hope (Somali NGO)
SPAUS       Support to Priority Areas in the Urban Sector
SISDISC     Support to Improved Service Delivery in Somali Cities
SSA         Special Service Agreement
SUDP        Somalia Urban Development Programme
UNA         One (Italian NGO)
UNDP        United Nations Development Programme
UNON        United Nations Office in Nairobi
USD         United States Dollar
WAWA        We are Women Activists (Puntland)
WFP         World Food Programme


                                        3
                                        UN-Habitat

            Somalia Urban Development Programme (SUDP) 2005-2008

                             FINAL EVALUATION REPORT
                                 Executive Summary


In March 2008 an end-of-programme evaluation was carried out by an independent
consultant experienced in post-emergency settlement, community development, human
resource development, and programme design and management. Field work for the
evaluation included visits to Puntland and Somaliland as well as document review and
interviews in Nairobi. The final report extends to 60 pages and contains numerous
recommendations pertinent to the forthcoming UN Joint Programme on Local
Governance and Decentralised Service Delivery for Somalia.

The SUDP attracted support form six United Nations agences (including UN-Habitat)
plus five donor insititutions. The principal donor was the European Union which
contributed Euro 5 million to a budget that eventually totalled USD 15.4 million.
Cooperating organisations in the field were ILO and UNA – a consortium of Italian
NGOs. Several local implementing organisations were engaged. Work was undertaken
in all three parts of Somalia. However, security concerns and cultural differences meant
that impact was achieved mostly in Somaliland, with relatively little being possible in the
South Central part of the country.

Three years is a very short period within which to see significant changes in urban
management. In that many of the SUDP’s achievements are traceable to earlier
projects, the programme must be seen in the light of UN-Habitat’s work there over the
past 25 years. For the SUDP itself, an early decision was made to focus efforts in three
areas: (i) the particiaptory design and execution of small development projects for the
improvement of local infrastruture; (ii) arranging for surveying and improvements in the
layout of IDP settlements; and (iii) providing training, hardware and software for the
improvement of municipal finance, including property suveying using GIS to increase
municipal revenue base.

The main achievements of the programme were: (i) in nine towns demonstrating to
municipalities and community groups how small urban improvement projects can be
organised (ii) delivering improved infrastructure such as meat and vegetable markets
and slaughterhouses; (iii) improving the property tax collection system leading to an
important actual and potential increase in municipal revenue; (iv) training up municipal
accountants from 11 towns to use improved methods of book keeping and accounting
software; (v) introducing the concept of strategic urban planning to selected
municipalities; (vi) improving the layout of IDPs settlements; (vii) introducing improved
methods of garbage collection and disposal with associated income generation activities;
(viii) engaging senior government officials in a dialogue on land management and the
need for reform of the prevailing land legal framework; (ix) assisting in the formation of
an Association of Municipalities for Somaliland; (x) producing a series of publications
that can contribute to urban management solutions; and (xi) providing planning and
management support for the delivery of 673 permanent housing units.




                                             4
The SUDP was characterised by the great care and attention paid to the process of
engaging with municipal and government officials, and with communities. The
achievement of pre-defined programme outcomes was less in focus. In this respect the
SUDP can be likened to the type of programme that is commonly mounted by non-
governmental development organisations. Acknowledging the importance of the clan-
based culture and the political situation prevailing in Somalia, the community based
participatory approach provided scope for the building of much needed understanding
and acceptance of the need for change. In this context, the community based approach
made good sense and yielded a good fit with traditional patterns.

The SUDP was intended to provide advantages in two other areas: it was to serve as a
learning ground that would enable UN-Habitat to work in a more integrated way with the
many aspects of urban development, and it was to provide an umbrella under which a
variety of donor organisations could make a contribution. In fact, learning was achieved
on many fronts, although further measures will be required to ensure that the learning
leads to better programmes and improved management. The advantages of the
umbrella have been significant in terms of avoiding multiple, overlapping and possibly
contradictory initiatives; it has also helped to provide additional financial flexibility.

The programme design was influenced by terms outlined in the EU’s call for proposals.
Inter alia these placed emphasis on the need for a physical delivery component that
would allow better on-the-job capacity development. The model, i.e. engaging in
practical actions bringing visible benefits before attempting to engage decision makers in
discussions on urban planning or urban management issues, was entirely appropriate.
Setting up local projects provided for a consultative process in which priorities were
identified and capacity engendered. However, the extent to which this process has had
an impact during the programme term on wider urban planning issues remains in doubt.

Continuance of the policy of providing resources for local projects is both unsustainable
and risks perpetuating a culture of dependency. It is recommended that future project
aid be tied to the municipalities raising income from property taxes to a level that would
allow them to finance urban improvement on an ongoing basis.

Orchestrating the local projects was much more time-consuming than originally
anticipated. Work on the IDP settlements was also extremly demanding. Together,
these two activities absorbed most of the time and attention of programme personnel.
These practical activites were very much apprecaited by the beneficiaries and have
helped to create a degree of local acceptance and legitimacy for UN-Habitat that would
not otherwise have been possible. Building on these openings and ensuring that the
gains are not lost, will require some nimble action on the part of both UN-Habitat and the
donor community.

Although capacity building was not conceived as a specific programme focus, a great
deal of time and energy went into the task of educating and supporting municipal officials
and other local counterparts. Most of this effort was in the form of training provided on-
the-job, with the addition of a variety of short courses. The trainings most appreciated
were those on good governance and solid waste management. With few exceptions,
programme personnel were not recruited for their skills in training, and the impact of the
training provided remains diffuse and undocumented. A more strategic approach to
capacity development is called for, one that is based on training needs analyses, is
related to the specifics of the Somali situation, and that provides long-term professional


                                             5
training opportunities in the range of disciplines that pertain to urban governance, the
provision of urban planning and urban services.

With the proposal to the European Union for the SUDP no logical framework was
required, a fact that can be considered unfortunate. A logframe was subsequently
developed but in terms that were vague and unhelpful. Goals were formulated without
full opportunity being provided to field personnel to participate in the decision making
process and thus beyond the possibility of achievement. Making more modest claims
that acknowledge the difficulties of operating in Somalia would, in the long term, redound
to the credibility of both the implementing organisations and the donors.

The blueprint approach to programme design was avoided in favour of a constantly
negotiated approach. The two are not incompatible provided that the intended outcomes
and outputs are regularly updated in light of what needs to be or can be achieved in the
field. Until June 2007 this did not happen, so that programme activities became
disconnected from the necessary management tools. Future programmes of this type
must get to grips with the need for operational planning and task management while
working to a flexible, creative and participatory script.

For the planning of any future similar programme it is recommended that UN-Habitat
engage the services of a professional project planner who is able to assist in the drafting
of meaningful outcomes and outputs, with their corresponding indicators. Baselines
should be established and output targets agreed. A careful analysis of risk and
assumptions should be made. For the achievement of each output a budget and other
necessary resources should be assigned. The outputs should be tied to an
organizational chart that shows clearly which member of the programme team is
responsible for delivering them. A work plan should be formulated that is negotiated with
all stakeholders, including with all members of the programme team and with relevant
Somali counterparts. Agreements signed with partner organisations as well as
personnel contracts should be tied to the delivery of the defined outcomes and /or
outputs. An independent monitoring agent should be appointed to track and report on
performance, and to advise on the need for contract wavers or extensions according to
the evolving circumstances.

UN-Habitat benefits from no core funds. On the other hand the grant from the EU did
not provide for the human resources necessary to run the programme office effectively,
or to provide the quality of technical assistance in the field that would have been
desirable. These two facts together constituted a serious break on programme
performance.

Given the bottom-up community participation approach used in the SUDP, the three-
year time frame adopted for the programme appears ridiculously short. It was
understood that there might be further iterations of the programme, and the need to
maintain all aid to Somalia on a short leash is understandable. Nevertheless, for this
type of programme it would be helpful to be able to work with a longer-term perspective.

In relation to its substantive and geographical scope, the SUDP was seriously
understaffed, both in terms of numbers and quality of personnel. The recruitment of
international staffers was problematic. The procedures available were slow; Somalia did
not appear to many applicants as an attractive duty station; and although senior
personnel with significant international experience did apply, the funds available were


                                             6
insufficient to secure their services. Terms and conditions of service for both nationals
and internationals were a particular problem, resulting in a high staff turn over and,
ultimately, a waste of the organisation’s resources. The failure in human resource
management was unfortunate, for it was only after about two years of service that
individual recruits reached their most productive level. UN-Habitat should strive for a
more modern and effective operational culture, one that is willing to invest in its people
and, in so doing, deliver assured and greater benefits.

Numerous delays in programme implementation occurred and, together, resulted in less
flexibility and diminished programme impact. They also seriously undermined the
credibility of UN-Habitat in the eyes of government and local officials. These delays
were attributable to many causes. Key were delays in obtaining the transfer of funds
committed by UNDP and by other donors, security concerns, and the difficulty of
recruiting suitable field personnel and retaining them. The contracting of personnel,
procurement, and the setting up of cooperation agreements with partner organisations
was handled by the Programme Support Division of UN-HABITAT and the United
Nations Office in Nairobi. The operational rules and obstructive culture pertaining within
these offices represented a particular problem that, for the conduct of any future
programme, must be addressed.

By attempting to work with a variety of partner organisations UN-Habitat entangled itself
in administrative and operational problems that brought with them additional delays. If
the modality of fashioning linkages with a variety of organisations is to be pursued, UN-
Habitat must be more circumspect in its choice of partners. A more transparent means
of assessing institutional competence and reducing the associated risks is
recommended. For reasons of administrative efficiency, in relation to any one
programme it would also be wise to limit the number of partners.

In the management of the SUDP there appears to have been poor articulation between
the Programme Steering Committee and the issues that were raised by programme
personnel. Greater discipline in formulating and /or recording the substance of the
Committee’s recommendations would help in obtaining value for money from the
members’ participation.

The future UN Joint Programme provides for the incorporation of a much stronger basic
support package to municipalities than was possible under the SUDP. It is intended that
this will create a better foundation on which to build technical capacity. It is also
expected that the Programme will open the door to developing a broader range of basic
services, to include for example water supply and education. While these objectives are
undoubtedly worthwhile, it may be wise to consider the implications. It is only in recent
times that the communities with which the SUDP worked have been exposed to the
opportunities presented. The municipal governments are still fragile, and the community
groups organised around specific and limited needs. Trying to move on all fronts
simultaneously is likely to overburden this teething democracy and risks undermining,
rather than reinforcing, what has already been achieved.

When one examines the administrative arrangements for supporting such an ambitious
programme one must also question whether any part of the UN system as presently
deployed in Puntland or the South Central part of the country could possibly be expected
to cope. From an operational point of view Somaliland is possible but, even here, it
would be wise to adopt a phased approach and to proceed cautiously.


                                             7
While an integrated approach to fostering change is desirable – and actually
recommended, it must be noted that every additional need addressed will have an
opportunity cost. As the experience of the SUDP clearly demonstrates, in a situation
where funds are constrained – especially for the engagement of personnel – multiple
needs cannot be perused at the same time. One umbrella cannot cover every aspect of
underdevelopment, so before issues are pulled in or thrown out, the identification of real
synergies becomes important. This calls for detailed analysis of the opportunities,
constraints, risks and resources available before committing to any particular course of
action.

If UN-Habitat wishes to see benefits emerging from its investment in technical training
then it must be ready to invest further in the social mobilisation that will be necessary to
ensure that the technical components bear fruit. One of the SUDP’s strengths has been
a willingness to recognise the advantage of bringing a variety of stakeholders together
for the common good. A simple extension of this principle would be to work with local
NGOs that specialise in awareness raising and networking. Some of the Somali NGOs
through which UN-Habitat has been working in Puntland and the South Central parts of
the country are anxious to move in this direction and to engage in broader social action
for the reform of governance.

To improve further the efficiency of the municipalities in those areas where it is safe for a
programme to operate, it is recommended that there be an extension of the property
survey and billing system to additional towns. In those places where a beginning has
already been made, there should be a further extension of the work. Commitments that
have already been entered into to provide support for specific projects should be
honoured, for example for the completion of the solid waste management schemes or
the completion of other local projects. For the completion of this work a time limit should
be imposed.




                                              8
                                       INTRODUCTION

The following report provides observations and conclusions on the purpose, conduct and
effectiveness of a programme known as the Somalia Urban Development Programme
that ran from April 2005 to March 2008. 1 The programme consisted of a variety of
activities that were designed to improve urban local governance and urban conditions in
Somalia, a second important component being to improve living conditions for returnees
and internally displaced people living in both formal and informal settlements.

The programme was implemented by UN-Habitat with the assistance of several other
UN agencies and a number of international and local NGOs. The UN agencies included
UNDP, ILO, UNICEF, OCHA and UNHCR. Initial funding for the programme, Euro 5
million and US Dollars 1.3 million, was provided by the European Union and UNDP,
respectively. Thereafter, a variety of other donors contributed funds, including
Government of Italy, DFID, UNHCR, and World Bank /UNDP.

For urban development activities in Somalia additional funds were contributed by
Government of Japan, the UN Trust Fund for Human Security, and UNICEF /OCHA.
These contributions were not considered part of the SUDP but nevertheless managed by
the SUDP Team. Total contributions reached almost USD 15.4 million, as below.

                         Donor Contributions to SUDP 2005-2008
                                                             USD
        European Union                                             6,500.000
        UNDP                                                       1,300,000
        Government of Italy                                        1,200,000
        DFID                                                         875,150
        UNHCR                                                        197,537
        UNDP /World Bank                                             188,097
               Grants Managed through SUDP but not part of Programme
        Government of Japan                                        1,895,200
        UNTF for Human Security                                    1,700,000
        UNICEF /OCHA                                               1,503,642
        Total USD                                                 15,359,626


The report should be read as a companion volume to the SUDP End of Programme
Report that is being prepared by UN-Habitat’s own personnel. That document details
the scope and purpose of the programme and its activities. The present volume goes
beyond the factual description to identify those themes and issues that may be of use to
UN-Habitat and its partner organisations in the prosecution of future similar
programmes. In particular, an attempt is made to harvest those lessons from experience
that may be of use in the detailed planning and management of Phase I of the
forthcoming UN Joint Programme on Local Governance and Decentralised Service
Delivery for Somali, for which the UN-Habitat carries a special responsibility. 2

1
  As of March 2008 it was expected that a no-cost extension of the programme would be possible
to September 2008.
2
  UN-Habitat is designated lead agency for Outcome 2 of the UN Transition Plan for Somalia, to
which the first phase of the Joint Programme is aligned. In this connection the organisation will
undertake substantive analysis and reporting of pertinent issues.


                                                9
Conduct of the Evaluation

The evaluation was carried out by an independent evaluator during the period 5 March –
28 April 2008. The mission included a review of programme documents, in-depth
discussion with programme personnel and other stakeholders, and field visits totalling
nine days to programme offices and project sites in Bosasso (Puntland), Hargeisa and
Burao (Somaliland).

The draft report has been reviewed by senior programme personnel and corrections and
suggestions incorporated. An executive summary was made available to the
Programme Steering Committee for review at its meeting on 2 April 2008.

From an initial review of programme documents, 113 separate issues and questions
were identified by the evaluator, grouped under the following headings

            •   Programme design
            •   Programme planning, monitoring and evaluation
            •   Relationships with cooperating organisations
            •   Relationships with government counterparts
            •   Difficulties in the field
            •   Programme management
            •   Human resource management
            •   Capacity development.

The questions and issues so identified were discussed with senior programme personnel
in Nairobi. Based on the information provided, a reduced list of 47 topics was prepared
as a guide to discussion with informants in the field.

Contact was made with representatives of central government and of the municipalities 3
who were familiar with the work that had been undertaken. Representatives of
intermediary organisations that had held contracts with UN-Habitat for implementation of
aspects of the programme were also interviewed. These meetings shed light not only on
the achievements, which were generally appreciated, but also on the difficulties of
managing relationships of international cooperation.

Operational constraints in Baidoa (the South-Central part of Somalia) and the security
situation in Puntland prevented the evaluator from visiting sites where programme work
had been undertaken. Much of the information contained in the report comes therefore
from secondary sources. One informant was contacted who knew something of the
work of the SUDP in the South Central part of the country. A list of persons interviewed
is contained in Annex 6.

The report is a synthesis of materials derived from a large number of written reports and
from the interviews with programme personnel and other stakeholders. As there were
no regular monitoring arrangements, other than brief reports provided to the
programme’s Steering Committee, the sources relied upon were less than complete.

3
 In Somalia, Municipalities and Districts are the same thing, not two different levels of
administration.



                                                 10
The task of integrating the information available in a manner that the reader will find
accurate and acceptable has been challenging.

Given the scope and complexity of the SUDP, the report is necessarily partial; no
attempt has been made at achieving a comprehensive coverage of all aspects of the
programme. The fact that the SUDP consisted of several different components, and that
each component was implemented in different locations by a variety of personalities and
organisations, necessarily means that there was considerable variety also in the way the
programme was implemented. The methodologies adopted also evolved over its three-
year period.

For the forgoing reasons, based on their own knowledge some readers may take
exception to what is reported. However, the fact that what has been reported is different
from what actually happened in certain locations does not mean either that what is
reported is untrue, or that those who may take exception to it are wrong so far as
concerned some other locations with which they are familiar. Nevertheless, so far as
possible, an attempt has been made to present a balanced picture with the emphasis on
learning for the future.

Observations and recommendations relating to aspects of the urban development work
managed by the SUDP Team but not strictly part of the Somalia Urban Development
Programme (i.e. those covered by grants provided by Government of Japan, the UN
Trust Fund for Human Security, and UNICEF /OCHA) have been made available
separately to UN-Habitat. 4



                           DESIGN AND EVOLUTION OF THE SUDP


The Somali Urban Context

Somalia is a country where the state exists in a de jure capacity but where warlordism
continues to prevail, especially in the south and central parts of the country. Since the
downfall of the central government under Siad Barre in 1991 low and high-intensity
conflicts have persisted. Pockets of prosperity exist but Somalia has become one of the
poorest countries in the world; the 2001 UN Human Development Index ranked Somalia
161 out of 163 countries. The population is estimated at 7.7 million people with over 73
per cent living on an income of less than USD 2.00 per day.

The Somali urban context is a complex one. Dwellings range from simple huts made of
twigs and waste plastic to substantial brick and concrete structures. Public buildings are
few, and generally depend on external inputs for rehabilitation, upgrading, equipping and
maintenance. Commercial enterprise flourishes and, here and there, modern office
buildings of several stories have emerged. Towns are generally casual haphazard
settlements with main roads dissecting an otherwise disorganized agglomeration of solid
houses, shacks, huts and other buildings.



4
    See the First Draft of the present report, 27 March 2008.


                                                  11
Land is owned by or grabbed by private interests with little or no land vested in the state
or the municipalities. A multitude of users fight over the same pieces of land, and
regularly, related conflicts result in casualties and deaths. Disorganized public spaces
are subject to encroachment or are uncared for and insanitary. A weak legal framework
and a planning vacuum exacerbate the problem. Lack of urban management makes the
introduction of infrastructure and services extremely difficult. In the North West - the
self-proclaimed state of Somaliland - the situation is more stable, but everywhere clan
affiliations define who wins and who looses. In such unregulated competitions the
victims are transparency, equitable sharing and the common good.

Urbanisation is increasing rapidly with many groups, especially internally displaced
people, migrating to more developed areas in search of better livelihoods and away from
conflict zones. People tend to be on the move in search of opportunities, which many
assume to be found in the urban centres. To illustrate, over the past 20 years the
population of the port city of Bosasso in northern Puntland has increased from 20-30,000
people to the current estimated 165,000. The flows and numbers of internally displaced
people and returnees are frequently changing. For example, between February and
April 2007 over 400,000 people were reported to have left Mogadishu following conflict
in parts of the city, while the period May-June 2007 saw a return of around 127,000.

The population shifts lead to multiple problems, most of which are beyond the resources
of the local authorities to cope with. Public investment in basic services is minimal;
financial resources for local governments rarely exceed $4.50 per capita. 5 Such
investment as there is generally comes from non-state actors. Sources of local revenue
include land taxes; business licensing fees, livestock taxes, and customs at ports.
However, around 60 per cent of the municipal budgets is spent on staff salaries and
allowances. The fact that there is almost zero understanding of the basic concepts and
practice of urban planning adds to the country’s misery.

Following the collapse of the Somali state and the subsequent 16 years of conflict, civil
society has emerged as an important social and political force. Civil society
organisations are actively contributing to peace, reconciliation and development and
have taken on some of the traditional functions of the state, such as dispute resolution
and the provision of local services. With the exception of a few activists in this sector,
most Somalis do not consider the inclusion of women in civic affairs to be either right or
necessary. Women are regarded as a political and social minority and are generally
excluded from participation in public decision-making.


Antecedents to the SUDP

UN-Habitat has been working in Somalia for the past 25 years. Its interventions in the
1980s consisted of small projects supporting nomadic settlements. By the mid-1990s its
efforts were focused on building the capacity of re-emerging local authorities struggling
to operate in a fragile post-conflict situation. At this time building technical and
administrative capacity was crucial and focused primarily on the need for water supply
and improved financial management. In the period 1999-2003, with Italian co-financing

5
 This is well below the norm for Least Development Countries, which is between $20 and $50
per capita. The resource deficits render Somali local authorities weak in designing and delivering
basic services and promoting development.


                                               12
UN-Habitat carried out project activities in Berbera 6 , and implemented a Netherlands
funded urban water supply project in Burao

In 2002 with assistance from the European Development Fund UN-Habitat prepared a
Somalia Urban Sector Profile Study. The study summarised the urban facts and
challenges over Somalia as a whole with a more detailed focus on Somaliland. Based
on this, UN-Habitat prepared for the European Union a proposal for a Somalia Good
Local Governance and Leadership Training Programme (GLTP). The programme ran
from July 2003 to November 2004 and served as an immediate pre-cursor to the SUDP.
Notwithstanding its limited time frame, many of the principles underlying the SUDP
originated with or were developed by the GLTP. The project adapted international
training materials to the Somali context while training trainers and building the capacity
of local training institutions. 7

Simultaneously with the start up of the GLTP the EU commissioned COWI Consult to
prepare a feasibility and design a study for an urban development programme. The EU
policy for Somalia was expressed in the resulting Urban Development Strategy for
Somalia, September 2003. The strategy was formulated within the general framework of
the Cotonou Partnership Agreement of 2001. Also influential was the EU’s Strategy for
the Implementation of Special Aid to Somalia, adopted by the Commission February
2002. Some of the thinking behind these documents is also to be found in the EC
Consultative Guidelines for Sustainable Urban Development Cooperation – Towards
Sustainable Urban Development, A Strategic Approach.

A sister project to the GLTP was started in July 2004 entitled Support to Priority Areas in
the Urban Sector (SPAUS). This project, financed by UNDP and the Government of
Italy, provided training to municipal officials in ten cities (seven in Somaliland and three
in Puntland) and ran until December 2005. Under this heading USD 1.585 million was
allocated to support urban law reform; municipal finance and assets management; urban
planning and development control; land management, property registration and the
development of urban land information systems; and the rehabilitation of government
buildings.

Notwithstanding the fact that in many parts of Somalia few of the conditions prevailed
that would allow the usual kind of development programme, a heightened awareness of
the geo-political importance of the region meant that, by 2005, a significant volume of aid
resources had become available. UN-Habitat was then able to build on its previous
experience to offer in the SUDP an all-encompassing umbrella programme that would
allow a variety of organizations to work together to address related needs. Even though
many of the previous components incorporated in the GLTP and SPAUS projects
remained unaltered, the possibility of securing support from an increased range of
donors provided the opportunity to work on a wider canvas and for the interests of
internally displaced people, returnees and the urban poor.


6
  From the beginning of 2001 to end 2002 the same donor supported an Italian NGO, Africa 70, in
the strengthening of capacity and service delivery in Bosasso. Later, work with IDPs was
included.
7
  Given the 18 months allowed for the work the project was judged overambitious in scope.
Evaluation of the Good Local Governance and Leadership Training Programme: Final Report, 20
June 2005, p15.


                                              13
SUDP Design and Implementation

The Somalia Urban Development Programme (SUDP) was launched 1 April 2005 with a
grant of Euro 5 million (USD6.5 million) from the European Union, and an additional
promised contribution of USD 1.5 million from UNDP – of which USD 1.3 million was
actually released. The programme was scheduled to run for three years to end March
2008. The scheduled partners were ILO, UNICEF, WFP, Oxfam-Novib, and the UNA
NGO Consortium. Counterparts were the central authorities of Somaliland and Puntland
together with eleven municipal authorities, seven in Somaliland and four in Puntland. 8
Subsequently, several civil society organisations were drawn into implementation: the
Somaliland Civil Service Institute, PIDAM, SAACIID, CRD and GAVO.

The Urban Development Strategy of 2003 (mentioned above) listed the following
priorities for action:

           •   Municipal financial management and budgeting procedures;
           •   Land use planning;
           •   Development of infrastructure institutions;
           •   Local economic development, employment and income generation;
           •   Accountability and participation;
           •   Municipal association and exchange;
           •   Municipal decision-making procedures and support systems;
           •   Land management procedures;
           •   Urban upgrading;
           •   Institutional development for social service provision; and
           •   Central administration, support for urban development.

The output matrix (logframe) developed for the SUDP included work in most of these
areas, arranged as follows

           •   Legal and institutional reform for the urban sector
           •   Strengthening municipal governance
           •   Civil society and community participation
           •   Donor co-ordination and programming for the urban sector
           •   Urban planning and development control
           •   Land management
           •   Financial management
           •   Basic services and infrastructure
           •   Local economic development
           •   Local projects
           •   Monitoring and urban indicators

In practice, for most of the three year programme period, priority attention was given to
participatory land use planning for the benefit of IDPs, measures to increase municipal
finance, and the setting up and implementation of local projects for infrastructural
improvement. A map of Somalia with the distribution of SUDP components appears as
Annex 1. Annex 2 shows the status of UN-Habitat projects in Somalia as of March 2008.
8
 In Somaliland: Boroma, Gebiley, Hargeisa, Berbera, Sheikh, Burao and Erigavo. (Odweyne
was later added as an eighth town). In Puntland: Bossaso, Gardo, and Garowe.


                                            14
The SUDP was formulated with an awareness that the process of governance reform
and capacity development would require a much longer time span than the three years
foreseen for the programme. It was nevertheless understood that, subject to
experience, a continuation in some form was likely. The SUDP offered a more
comprehensive approach to addressing urban problems than had been tried before, at
least in Somalia, while affording an opportunity for further experimentation. At the same
time the programme was to provide a vehicle for the international community to come
together to address some of the urban sector needs. There was also an expectation
that the experience gained in the relatively unstable situation would prove valuable as
and when conditions improved.

From the beginning it was agreed that the SUDP would address needs in all parts of
Somalia where it was safe to work. Such an approach was considered necessary so as
to avoid appearing to favour one clan or one geographical area above another. In other
countries “pilot” projects are seen as the norm, but in Somalia it was believed that such
an approach would give rise to jealousies and, ultimately, more problems than it solved.
The hypothesis is however open to question. Such problems were not reported from
earlier, smaller, projects managed by UN-Habitat and, except in Puntland where the
concept of a competition for resources was not well understood, the municipalities that
did not received financial assistance in Somaliland did not prove to be troublesome.

The different political, governance and security conditions prevailing in Somali’s three
geographical areas did however have a dramatic impact on the work of the SUDP.
During the life of the programme the South-Central part of the country became
progressively more difficult, although from September 2007 to April 2008 some work was
done with community groups in and around Mogadishu. 9 Activities there included district
level consultations between key stakeholders to define common priorities and the
formulation of action plans for the upgrading and rehabilitation of urban infrastructure.

The north-east (Puntland) also became progressively more difficult. The current
situation is that in Bosasso staff members are almost totally confined to the guesthouse,
and in Garowe heavy precautions are in place. In security terms the gap between
Puntland and the north-west has continued to widen. The result was that, with the
exception of the work for IDPs in Bosasso, the programme’s efforts have increasingly
been channelled to Somaliland.

The geographical scope of a programme was important in relation to both its budget and
the complexity of the tasks to be undertaken. Where numerous and repeated visits had
to be made to a community, the amount of time spent in travel by programme workers
was a key determinant of efficiency. Managing several programme components, some
of which were necessarily idiosyncratic in order to respond to specific local
circumstances, required an enormous amount of time and energy. Such an approach
also represented a cost in terms of overnight accommodation, fuel, and wear and tear on
the vehicles, etc.




9
    Not all of this related to the SUDP.


                                           15
                             PROGRAMME COMPONENTS

Urban Planning

It was initially hoped that the provision of training in urban planning would be the flagship
component. Yet what could be done in practice had to be formulated in a situation
where there were no counterparts with relevant technical backgrounds. As no
counterpart personnel had a relevant educational education it could not, for example, be
expected that the programme would train up municipal urban planners or even create
urban planning departments. On top of the almost total lack of relevant human
resources available both within and outside the local government institutions, the legal
instruments necessary for planning either did not exist or were unclear or contradictory.

Given the absence of a workable land law and the more or less anarchic state of land
distribution, it was difficult for the programme’s urban planners to identify a strategy that
could work. Given the fact that most land is in the hands of private owners or land
grabbers, and that neither the Government nor the municipalities have de facto
jurisdiction over land of their own, finding space for public services such as markets,
settlement areas, schools, clinics or transportation services was a major challenge. The
only option seemed to be to persuade existing land holders of the benefits of sharing use
with the public authorities. These are incremental steps and ones that can only be
applied in situations where the local authorities are strong enough to broach negotiations
with the land owners or occupiers. Such conditions were far from present.

To the idea of planning in general, the attitude of most officials – as of the population in
general – tended to be ambivalent. War, insecurity and a still largely nomadic mindset
has accustomed people to operate with short-term time horizons. The idea of land use
planning in particular caused problems, especially where this threatened to disturb the
interests of the few. At the same time, almost all municipal authorities craved for a “town
plan”, even though they had only a vague idea of what such a plan should contain or
how it could be used. On the other hand, in at least one town - Hargeisa – the municipal
authorities recognized the importance of urban planning and were ready to embrace
what the SUDP had to offer.

For these reasons it was decided to approach the problem in an incremental way,
starting from specific local projects that would address real needs for the urban
population and that could, in the course of time, be used as a springboard for more
concerted urban planning and development. In this, the programme design was much
influenced by terms outlined in the EU’s call for proposals. Inter alia these placed
emphasis on the need for a physical delivery component that would allow better on-the-
job capacity development.

In retrospect, the model, i.e. engaging in practical actions bringing visible benefits to the
community before attempting to engage decision makers in theoretical issues, appears
entirely appropriate. Setting up the projects provided for a local consultative process in
which priorities were identified and some limited capacity engendered in project
planning. Annex 3 shows the links that it was possible to establish between local area
planning - based on the needs of small infrastructure proejcts, and a slightly more
ambitious form of urban planning. However it is only now, towards the end of this phase
of the programme, that it is becomming possible to engage with the authorities in a more
systematic approach to urban planning in general.


                                             16
The projects themselves were selected through a competitive call for proposals, and an
evaluation of submissions prepared by each town following a series of urban
consultations at which all stakeholders had the opportunity to participate. A surprising
number of communities opted for improvements to the local market places and /or
slaughterhouses, but this appears to have been entirely spontaneous and not directed in
any way by SUDP personnel. In all cases the preparation for the project incorporated a
simple discussion of design issues such as access, the availability of a water supply,
sanitary provisions and transportation. A full list of the projects that were adopted
appears in Table 3.

Moving from implementation of the individual projects to a broader discussion of urban
planning issues was less predictable. Again, Table 3 shows the progression in this
regard. Transition to this second step was slowed considerably by the amount of time
and attention that the local projects required of SUDP personnel. It had somehow been
assumed that setting up a number of small to medium-scale local projects would be a
relatively straightforward operation. In fact, given the almost total lack of familiarity with
modern organisational approaches to project management, every step of the way in
every project had to be husbanded by the SUDP Team. Given the fact that the projects
were geographically scattered, an enormous amount of time and travel was consumed in
just bringing the local projects to fruition.

Notwithstanding the difficulties, the programme’s Urban Planning Advisors have opined
that the spatial approach to planning and the use of design has provided added value to
several of its components. In the case of Xaafuun, for example, it is said that the
approach helped to achieve environmentally and economically sustainable resettlement.
In the case of IDP resettlement, planning skills helped in the identification and laying out
of land; and in the case of local projects, the spatial approach allowed the stakeholders
to redefine proposals and turn them into catalysts for possible future urban development.

The planning approach currently being tried in Puntland is to identify those functions that
relevant officials are called upon to perform, for example considering applications for
building permits, and to offer them tools that will make their task easier – for example by
providing a zoning map. In the circumstances of a more or less totally dysfunctional
government structure this incremental approach is probably the only one that makes
sense. Developing a plan is relatively easy; ensuring that it is understood and accepted
by the officials, and then applied, is more difficult as well as time-consuming. Urban
planning in Somalia is in its extreme infancy and in Puntland the SUDP has done no
more than show a few stakeholders what might be possible.


The Implementation of Local Projects

In Somaliland the programme selected four towns to receive help with local projects
based on the results of a competition in which seven towns tried to try to show how their
project was the best. Depending on the quality of the proposal, and the assessed need
for assistance, grants between US$ 30,000 and 120,000 were awarded for public
infrastructure upgrading. The approach provided to be highly successful. Organising
events and periodically bringing together the different municipalities stimulated healthy
competition and allowed for a productive exchange of experience. Three towns that
where not successful in the main Call for Proposals nevertheless received a grant from


                                             17
the programme (between USD 12,000 and USD 16,000) for the purpose of a smaller
Local Project.

In Puntland, where the concept of competition was not well understood and rivalry
between the towns was less constructive, each of the four participating municipalities
was assured of a project, albeit of a different magnitude (depending on the quality of the
proposals).

Overall, the responsiveness of communities to the SUDP offerings was extremely
positive. With the exception of work in Puntland where a more flexible approach was
adopted, all local projects supported under the programme required a minimum cash
contribution of 25 per cent of the total value, plus community time. In some cases
contributions of up to 60 per cent were achieved.

Although the lion’s share of the available resources went to the larger towns which had
access to local consultants or other educated persons to improve the quality of their
submissions, the SUDP tried to assist those communities that were less well equipped
for the preparation of proposals. To achieve equity in this regard, selection criteria
included the degree of local commitment to the project, reflected for example in the
clarity of their ideas and what the community had done already in terms of organizing
meetings, consultations and discussions before submitting their proposal. In Puntland,
for example, the relatively small town of Gardo, was awarded a larger grant than
Bossaso, the most populated city of the Region. In Somaliland, Boroma received a
relatively small grant, despite the fact that the city is ranked second or third in terms of
population.

In Somaliland, municipalities that were not fortunate enough to be awarded a grant for a
local project were nevertheless invited to participate in six-monthly meetings of the
Somaliland Municipal Association. The Association was formed by the programme as a
means of developing linkages and proved to be extremely helpful. The SMA tried to
ensure a reasonable distribution of programme resources between the different towns
and also served as a vehicle for sharing experiences between the different projects, as
well as a forum in which to discuss common problems such as land regulation, taxation,
budgeting, garbage collection, and the formulation and enforcement of city by-laws.

The community organisation element associated with the local projects was not a
requirement of the programme, even tough SUDP community workers did put a great
deal of time and energy into this aspect. Community mobilisation did however help to
provide a sense of ownership of the project among the beneficiaries, as well as among a
wider group of local stakeholders. The duties of the community workers included
registering beneficiaries; arranging temporary space (for example for relocation of
market vendors during the construction operations); helping the community to check on
the quality of building materials and completed construction components; organising the
necessary works; and helping with the resolution of conflicts arising.

Setting up and managing the local projects was more time-consuming than had originally
been anticipated. Local technical capacity to implement the works to a reasonable
standard and with limited assistance did not exist. The production of technical
documents and drawings, and the preparation of cooperation agreements, tender
documents, subcontracts and implementation strategies, etc., all proved to be extremely
challenging. Several times, processes had to be re-launched because of shifts in


                                             18
position within the municipalities, or because of interruption in missions due to insecurity.
The need to maintain parallel negotiations with different stakeholders, kept programme
personnel busy throughout. Given the limited capacity of national staff, much greater
efforts were required of the international personnel than had been expected in the
project design.

One of the obstacles to successful awareness raising and skill development was the
rapid turn over among counsellors. Councillors are not always elected but, rather
(especially in Puntland) selected through clan negotiations. In the programme’s three
years, on several occasions in Puntland the central government intervened to dismiss
local counsellors en masse. This happened in both Garowe and Galcayo. The sudden
removal of all counsellors meant that the UN-Habitat had to begin anew with a newly-
elected group. As the outgoing counsellors removed all paperwork with which they had
been associated it became necessary to begin afresh in building new filing systems and
project documentation.

To secure construction services for implementation of the local projects two approaches
were used. The preferred modality was where the municipality was awarded custody of
the funds and had responsibility for awarding the contracts, but where SUDP provided
guidance and checks in the tendering process. Where the local government structure
was less strong, as in the case of Bossaso in Puntland, UN-Habitat contracted with local
construction companies directly. In all cases SUDP personnel were required to provide
both technical clearance and financial clearance at each stage of the project. Usually
the assigned funds were divided into six tranches and released only upon their
certification of completed activities and signature of a joint valuation document.

As is to be expected, probity in the use of programme funds was not achieved 100 per
cent. However, the only known case of misappropriation of funds assigned to a local
authority was one in Bosasso, where the Mayor disappeared with more than USD
20,000 earmarked for a road rehabilitation project funded under the DFID contribution to
the SUDP. 10 This amount represents only 1.1 percent of the total funds allocated to all
local projects. In all other cases the participatory process, the pains taken by
programme personnel to ensure openness and transparency in the financial
management of the projects, and community pressure, all combined to ensure proper
husbandry of the resources that were made available.

A number of communities have gone on to organise activities for urban improvement
independently of the SUDP. This has happened particularly in Hargeisa, where newly
created District Development Committees and Neighbourhood Committees have helped
the Municipality to mobilise additional resources, and where the cadastral work (see
below) has helped to generate additional income from local taxation. These cases can
be considered indicators of success, in that securing a degree of self-help, with buy in to
the principles that have been advocated by the programme, clearly demonstrate
achievement of the desired outcomes. With or without a continued involvement of the
programme in the lives of these communities, more impact of this kind can be expected.
The impact will however be attained sooner and be more secure and sustainable if
further relevant assistance is provided.



10
 USD 20,000 grant from DFID plus an unknown amount of local contributions.


                                             19
Cadastral Work

The cadastral work that was embarked upon in Hargeisa, Berbera, Boroma and Burao
was seen as a necessary step to urban planning, one that would also produce a data
base allowing the municipalities to collect additional revenue from property taxes. This
work was begun under the SPAUS programme but continued under the SUDP. These
were worthwhile objectives, the second of which has brought considerable prestige to
the programme. Activities included the acquisition of high-resolution satellite images
(Quickbird); the on-screen digitalizing of the image to create a map showing the footprint
of the properties and other features such as main roads and water courses; and the field
verification of the spatial database by the collection of attribute data using a tape
measure and pre-programmed handheld personal digital assistants (PDAs).

Over the three-year period 2004-2007, in Hargeisa the introduction of GIS survey
techniques for the preparation of a taxation roll and the adoption of an automated billing
system has resulted in an increase in revenue of 285 per cent, equivalent to more than
USD 200,000 per year in revenues domestically raised. Of the total number of
properties in the town, under the pre-existing system only 15,850 were subject to the
municipal tax; with the improvements the number has risen to 47,323. On this figure
further advances are expected. Similar improvements can be expected in other
municipalities where the same techniques are applied. In the future the same survey
work may serve other purposes, such as providing a reliable basis for the drafting of
strategic spatial development plans, zoning maps, transportation management plans,
utilities maps and the like.

The GIS survey was not without its problems, especially in the early days. In Burao,
when the programme began its surveying of properties, some elements amongst the
local community put up severe resistance, fearing that the work would result in an
infringement on privacy, the channelling of personal data to external intelligence
agencies, and increased taxes. Also, members of one of the local clans felt aggrieved
by the fact that, in their opinion, the survey team did not include a sufficient number of
their own in relation to those that had been recruited from a rival clan. Following on from
this incident, the SUDP learned to enter into a protracted process of public information
and awareness-raising before embarking on any similar surveys. Even so, after two
attempts, in Burao the survey work was abandoned.

A report by consultant Michael Barry cast doubt on the wisdom of beginning a fiscal
cadastre using GIS technology. As an alternative more traditional land surveying
techniques were advocated. 11 The Barry report raised several objections. 12 With the

11
   Michael Barry A Strategic Framework for Post-Conflict Land Administration Development:
Hargeisa Municipality, Somaliland, with a focus on GIS Implementation, Fiscal and Legal
Cadastral Systems Implementation, Land Conflict Analysis, and Land Law Development, UN-
Habitat, 20 July 2006.
12
   Among the objections to adopting GIS were the difficulty of getting GIS equipment repaired
when needed; the low accuracy of the data collected leading to public discrediting of the system;
the risk that trained operators may be head hunted by local IT companies and computer training
schools; and that disgruntled tax bill recipients may vandalise the system or /or destroy the
database. Without adequate back up materials that have been generated using less
sophisticated technologies, there is also the danger that there can be no output at all when the
GIS is down. Barry suggested that to support any reliable system it is necessary to have a
rigorous referencing and paper file archive. The consultant did not rule out the use of a GIS


                                               20
benefit of experience however it appears that, as a system for map-making to a standard
sufficiently accurate for urban planning, the adoption of the GIS technology was a good
choice. It produces results many times faster than conventional land surveying
techniques and is not difficult to apply. Operating costs are also less using GIS than
using conventional approaches. As the process of urban planning gains momentum the
benefits of the approach will become even clearer.

For the purpose of improving revenue collection from property, it is questionable whether
map-making of any kind was and is really necessary. To determine the measurements
of land and buildings on the basis of which property taxes can be calculated, even with
the application of GIS, teams of surveyors have to go from house to house and building
to building with a tape measure and personal digital assistant in hand. The advantage of
the GIS output is only that the location of one building relative to another is identified,
while each building is allocated a reference code. Although there is no system of house
numbering in Somalia, a simple alternative would have been to paint the numbers onto
each building, recording details of ownership as one went along. In most developing
countries this is the normal practice.


Municipal Financial Management

The work on municipal financing has attempted to address a number of common
budgetary problems. These included unrealistic budget estimates; weak financial
control; limited analytical capacity;; the absence of a general financial classification
system, and improper classification; unrealistic past figures; budgeting of ‘how much’
rather than ‘how best’; and. To address some of these issues the SUDP provided
training on double entry accounting; basic computer skills; revenue maximization
techniques; budget formulation; tally accounting; and financial classification.

This work appears to have been successful in terms of providing municipal accountants
with an understanding of certain basic concepts used in modern accounting systems.
Double entry book keeping has been taught extensively and its principles are now
generally understood by the concerned officials. The training provided under previous
projects laid the groundwork, although this resulted in little change to the actual
procedures. Under the SUDP a revision course was provided together with instruction in
the use of new municipal accounting software; trainers were made available to provide
training in the work place as well as in the classroom.

The lack of political will for the adoption of new methods of municipal accounting seems
to be a continuing problem. Even though the Regional and District Law 2007 provides
for a double entry book keeping methods to be applied, elected counsellors either do not
understand what is required and /or are reluctant to bring greater transparency to the
system. Aside from this, and notwithstanding considerably pressure from the World
Bank, which, in Somaliland is working with the Accountant General, there seems to be a




system but suggested that this should be adopted only as a later step once a more conventional
system had been put in place.


                                              21
natural reluctance to countenance any change in a system that has been in place for
many years. 13

An attempt by the SUDP Hargeisa office to persuade the Ministry of Interior to adopt a
revised budgetary classification system met with difficulties. While several of the senior
personnel in the Ministry approved of the idea, the Vice-Minister of the time vetoed the
initiative. At the time the present evaluation was being undertaken the situation had
improved considerably, with both the Minister and the Director General working hard to
improve transparency in budget formulation. Nevertheless, past experience underlines
the importance of awareness raising with all of the key stakeholders and not limiting
one’s efforts to the few dedicated officials.


Legal Aspect of Land Management

As was explained in the section of this report on the Somali Urban Context, Somalia is
riven with disputes over land ownership and tenure. Conflict of this type contributes in a
major way to the country’s record of violent crime. Reducing these conflicts and
developing secure property rights that underpin investment and economic growth are
strong arguments for developing an efficient and robust land management system. The
Land Management Laws in both Somaliland and Puntland are seriously deficient, as
also are the Local Government Law in Puntland and, in Somaliland, the Hargeisa City
Law. Attempts by UN-Habitat prior to 2005 to draw the attention of Government to these
deficiencies were rebuffed on the grounds that “meddling” in sovereign national affairs
was not the prerogative of an uninvited consultant.

To address the complexity of issues surrounding land ownership and land management,
from mid-2006 the SUDP followed what may best be described as a human and
institution building approach to reform. With assistance from the SUDP GIS and Land
Management Project Manager, in both Somaliland and Puntland Land Focus Groups
were formed. The Focus Groups included representatives from the private sector, the
government Ministries of Public Works and Interior, and the Land Committee of the
House of Representatives. Under the leadership of the Ministry of Public Works this
group has drafted and will present two rounds of amendments to the Land Law. The
Ministry of Interior will do the same for municipal bye-laws. 14 The work of the Focus
Groups has culminated in two National Land Management Workshops, which have
identified and prioritised the key elements of a national land management policy.

In Somaliland, a high level National Planning Committee that had been constituted under
the existing Land Law but which had fallen into disuse was reinvigorated with help from
UN-Habitat. The Committee’s mandate was to draft and approve plans for physical
development. The Committee delegated part of its task to a National Planning Technical
Committee, which in turn endorsed a plan by the Ministry of Public Works to set up a
National Planning Institute. From its own resources the MPW has constructed a building


13
   Programme personnel point out that SUDP interventions were not meant to change the system
but, rather, to prepare the ground for an upcoming change. On this basis, no criticism of the
programme itself is due.
14
   The plan is that the SUDP will then help the municipalities of Boroma and Burao to draft bye-
laws to improve the collection of property taxes.


                                              22
to house the Institute, with the understanding that UN-Habitat will furnish and equip the
building and provide a training input.

It was always accepted that the programme’s land component was not something that
was going to be brought to a conclusion within a time frame of three years. Work done
under this heading could nevertheless be said to have resulted in increased awareness
and, in some towns at least, a more informed political will. The achievement of improved
policy debate would appear to require, however, rather more knowledge transfer to both
elected and appointed officials than it has been possible to date.


Solid Waste Management

The solid waste management component was handled by UNA and supported from time
to time by experts from ILO. Work began with a participatory training process in the
Somaliland towns of Hargeisa, Boroma, Gabiley and Sheikh. This led to the formulation
of a strategy on how to address waste issues, including arrangements for collection,
disposal and land reclamation. The general approach has been to encourage the
municipalities to devolve responsibility for waste management either to a business
enterprise or a not-for-profit NGO. Some of the NGOs had been collecting waste prior to
the arrival of the project but on a small scale with fees charged to the producer of the
waste; there was little or no salvage involved and the equipment used was rudimentary.

The SWM component provided advice on appropriate technology that could be used at
each stage in the operation; the involvement of especially disadvantaged groups such as
IDPs; the provision of training in budgeting and financial management including for cost-
recovery; and the promotion of transparent management. Two ILO waste management
experts from a similar waste management project in Tanzania visited Somaliland several
times and provided additional inputs. A group of six Mayors or their representatives from
Somaliland towns also visited a waste management operation in Dar es Salaam to learn
from experience there.

During most of the programme’s three years, other than training and planning only a
limited amount of practical work was possible. The long delay between the inception of
the SWM component and the arrival of funds for strategic projects meant that it was
difficult to maintain a momentum. The municipalities were much disappointed by the
extended delays. It was not until August 2007 that a budgetary allocation of Euro
300,000 was received that allowed work to proceed with SWM projects in Hargeisa,
Boroma, Sheikh and Gebiley. 15 During the long period of waiting for funds work was
carried out in assisting trainers from the Italian University of Brescia in delivering
additional training courses on SWM; in translating training materials into Somali
language; and in providing training to school children in environmental protection and
waste management.




15
  Following deterioration in the security situation mid-2007, the work in Puntland had to be
suspended indefinitely.


                                                23
The aforementioned difficulties notwithstanding, in Hargeisa the adoption of the
recommended public-private partnership resulted in a saving of 27 per cent in the
municipal budget for waste collection. 16 Also in Hargeisa, in excess of 150 women have
been recruited to sort the refuse and to process those items – such a plastic bags – that
could be made into saleable items. A remarkable handicrafts production enterprise has
emerged to take advantage of this potential. At the time of the evaluation, operating
costs were still being financed from municipal sources, although there was an
expectation that within 12 months the improved system would be self-financing. Future
assistance from the SUDP is expected in terms of the provision of wheel barrows,
dumper trucks and the construction of raised concrete refuse transfer and sorting
stations.


Settlements for Internally Displaced People, Returnees and the Urban Poor

The UN estimates that in Somalia there are close to 750,000 internally displaced people.
In most cases the IDPs are forced to live in deplorable circumstances, lacking even the
most basic protection and essential services. Living conditions for these groups are
among the worst in Africa. The problem of responding to the growing number of IDPs
has taxed many donor organizations. The heaviest concentrations were (and are) found
in Bosasso in Puntland and in Galcayo in the South Central part of the country.

With UNHCR, UN-Habitat is Joint-Chair of the Shelter Cluster, a group of agencies
working together to deal with the IDP crisis. In this context the task of upgrading the IDP
settlements fell to UN-Habitat. With substantially the same team that had been engaged
to handle other aspects of the SUDP, the SUDP provided assistance in the selection and
planning of settlements and in the lay-out of shelter construction activities in Hargeisa
and Garowe (funded by the Japan Cooperation Fund); in Bosasso (DIFD and the UN
Human Security Fund); and currently in Jowhar and Baidoa (SIDA). As with the
management of local projects, this work became extremely time-consuming and,
inevitably therefore, had an impact on the speed with which other aspects of the
programme could be implemented.

Keeping up with the growth of the problem was a major challenge. In Bosasso in 2005
15 IDP settlements were recorded with approximately 25,000 people; in 2008 the figures
were 23 sites with 39,000 people or approximately 6,400 households. To March 2008
three of these sites had been upgraded by the SUDP and two were in process. 17

Implementation of the cluster approach worked best in Bosasso, where most of the
relevant agencies were represented; in other locations where only one or two agencies
were present it worked less well. For improving the existing settlements the SUDP
contribution consisted in surveying the sites; tracing out access roads, lanes and
locations for common services such as health clinics and (where permitted by the land
owner) latrines; and installing a water supply. The distribution of emergency shelter

16
   A public private partnership was used also in relation to the management of the Hargeisa
slaughterhouse, resulting in a similar saving to that budget line. The town of Boroma applied the
PPP approach to the town’s water supply.
17
   IDP sites already upgraded in Bosasso were Tawakai (134 households, 804 people); New
Shabelle (75 households, 450 people); and Bulo Elay (123 families, 738 people). Sites in
progress were Bulo Ajuuraan (474 households) and Bulo Mingis.


                                               24
packages was handled by a joint action team composed of UN-Habitat, DRC, NRC and
UNHCR. Although not part of the SUDP, in this UN-Habitat played a leading role.

In addition to its work in upgrading existing settlements, the SUDP provided site layout
and planning services for the establishment of permanent settlements. On these sites
individual programme personnel were involve in the management of social mobilisation
and construction operations, although these aspects of the work fell outside of the SUDP
remit per se.


Codes and Norms for Urban Planning and Building 18

Although work on the development of urban planning codes and building bylaws had
begun under an earlier programme, under the SUDP this work did not get underway until
October 2007. The programme’s Progress Report Number 3, June 2006 attributed this
to the time-consuming focus on local projects. In any event, the development of codes
and standards for planning and building is a time consuming activity because a lot of
consultation is required with stakeholders.

To be effective, implementation of the codes needs many things: the political will to
develop and enforce them; efficient legal and administrative structures and institutions
with the necessary technical personnel; a body of local designers and artisans able to
give expression to the standards in practice; effective means for disseminating
information about what the standards are and why they are necessary; and careful
integration of the existing legal, technical and administrative requirements so as to avoid
unnecessary duplication and contradictions between them.

The SUDP succeeded in launching a process through which Somaliland at least can
move forward on these desiderata. The work is slow but in the final months of the
programme had gained some momentum. Subject to the continued availability of
technical expertise, there is reason to believe that in due course Somaliland will be able
to formulate its own building code.


Gender

In the SUDP gender was not regarded as a priority issue but, rather, as a cross-cutting
theme that would be addressed through other components. From international sources
the GLTP had developed an excellent training manual (in English) for use in Somalia -
Gender and the Involvement of Women in Local Governance: A handbook of Concept
Training and Action Tools.

Although the SUDP was unable to recruit a suitable specialist to carry this work forward,
the land rights component did address a gender issue in seeking to secure inheritance
rights for women on the death of their spouse. The Minutes of the Second Steering
Committee Meeting, 27 November 2006, did however record that no progress had been
made on gender equality in urban practices.

18
  This section of the report draws on recommendations made by Elijah Agevi, planning and
building codes consultant, in his report Urban Regulatory Frameworks for Somaliland: Planning
and Building Codes and Standards, SUDP [no date].


                                              25
Publications

The SUDP produced a variety of publications as shown in Annex 4. Some of these have
been well received and continue in demand. Among these are the publication on
building codes and standards, and the report by consultant Mike Barry on land issues.
Demand for the Hargeisa planning guide that was produced as a glossy in full colour
booklet has been less in evidence, perhaps because its target is a more technical
audience and, for the non-specialist, requires serious study. In addition to these items
an Urban Planning Manual is currently in preparation that provides a “how to do it” guide
for municipalities in general. There was no programme manual per se, but what was
produced has helped a number of municipal authorities think constructively about the
wider urban planning issues.

Somali society is essentially an oral culture, with an adult literacy rate of 17 per cent, and
an almost complete absence of reading even among senior government officials. The
literacy rate for women and girls is much lower. Given this situation, programme
personnel tried as far as possible to introduce any necessary documents verbally and
have the essential parts translated into the Somali language. However, translation
turned out to be more of a challenge than expected, largely as a result of the poor quality
of the translators who were available and the different dialects of each region. The time
needed to adapt training materials too the specific local context was much
underestimated.

The SUDP Newsletter may have been launched to satisfy the EU’s visibility
requirements. Possibly this brought a public relations benefit to UN-Habitat in its
relationships with agencies in Nairobi, but it seems unlikely that it had any impact in the
field. Treatment of all three parts of Somalia in one publication transgressed existing
sensitivities, and the fact that the Newsletter was available only in the English language
meant that very few people in Somalia would read it. 19

Publications polices for similar future programmes should be clear about both the
message that is to be communicated and the target audience. As the experience of the
GLTP showed, the production of useful training materials is a lengthy and time-
consuming business, especially where translations are needed. Absolute clarity is
required on the purpose of the publication, on the composition of the target group at
which it is aimed, and on their existing level of understanding. In the case of the SUDP,
which had a much broader scope than the GLTP, the range of possible training products
was huge. 20


Coordination of International Contributions to the Urban Sector

The availability of funds from the European Union for infrastructural investment under
the SUDP was considerably less than the demand. Partly for this reason and partly by
virtue of the fact that the SUDP was an umbrella programme, additional funds were

19
  These comments are based on field interviews.
20
  As of March 2008 a self-review had been initiated with a new publications strategy in the
process of development.


                                               26
sought from other donors. The following is a summary of seven project grants received
by UN-Habitat and /or in which the SUDP Programme Team was involved in managing.
Under each project heading appears the name of the donor organization, the amount
contributed, and the start and end date for the project. In most cases the purposes of
the project, which are also summarised, was an elaboration of the work already foreseen
for the SUDP.

Strengthening Governance in Somalia in the Framework of the SUDP
DFID - USD 875,150 (GBP 500,000)
February 2006 - December 2007
This grant allowed for a strengthening of the overall SUDP with additional work for IDPs;
participation of SUDP personnel in the UNDP – World Bank led Somalia Joint Needs
Assessment; further infrastructure projects; the development of joint programming
proposals; and the addition of administrative personnel to support for the overall
programme. The grant was based on a gap analysis in the conduct of the SUDP and
proved to be extremely valuable in overcoming various financial constraints.

Support to Improved Service Delivery in Somali Cities (SISDISC)
Government of Italy through the Commission of the European Union - USD 1,200,000
July 2007 - 30 June 2009
The SISDISC project strengthens the SUDP by the addition of activities to improve basic
urban services and the strengthening of management structures in five cities. This
covered municipal finance, property and land registration, and solid waste management.

Emergency Assistance for the Resettlement of Returnees and IDPs in Somalia
Government of Japan - USD 1,895,200
May 2005 - October 2007
Working with local NGOs, the Municipalities of Hargeisa and Garowe, UNHCR, UN-
OCHA, WFP, UNDP, this project aimed to provide secure tenure, shelter and basic
services for IDPs - in particular sanitary facilities and water supply. Included specifically
were destitute IDP families in Garowe and Hargeisa-Ayaha that were headed by women
and members of vulnerable groups. Activities included the training of 700 returnees and
IDPs in building construction and in the production of local building materials; providing
job opportunities by establishment of small-scale, community-based enterprises; the
supply of construction tools and equipment materials; the development of community
governance and management techniques for IDP settlements; and the provision of
support for three technical workshop and self-help groups occupied in building 330
shelter units.

Shelter Provision for the Inhabitants of the Tsunami-affected Town of Xaafuun
UNICEF and UN-OCHA - USD 1,503,642
July 2005 - October 2007
In partnership with UNICEF, the Xaafuun District Development Committee, the UNA
NGO Consortium and UN-OCHA, UN-Habitat implemented a resettlement project for the
inhabitants of the Tsunami-affected village of Xaafuun on the Puntland Coast. While
UNICEF rebuilt several health and education facilities as well as the town’s water supply
system, UN-Habitat was responsible for the planning of a new settlement area and the
reconstruction of houses. The town was relocated to an area less exposed to flooding
and harsh weather conditions The relocation was accompanied by the construction of
203 housing units, completed mid-2007, the creation of child-friendly spaces and the
creation of opportunities for economic development for women.


                                             27
Support to the SUDP for pilot activities within the framework of the CDD/CDR project
implemented jointly by the World Bank, UNDP, UNICEF and UN-Habitat
UNDP (LICUS) and World Bank – USD 188,097
November 2006 - January 2007
In coordination with the World Bank, UNDP and UNICEF this LICUS-funded project
focuses on piloting a community-driven recovery (CDR) strategy in three districts of
Somaliland and Puntland. For this purpose it aimed to build the capacity of several local
bodies, including district councils, to play a role in the programme. The project sought to
ensure proper relations between the authorities and the target communities; clarified
roles and responsibilities between the different stakeholders; trained leaders and women
in local governance; and improved the quality of community action plans, including for
local economic development.

Protection, Reintegration, and Resettlement of IDPs (Bossaso)
UN Trust Fund for Human Security - USD 1,700,000 (of a total grant of USD 4,039,948)
September 2007 - June 2009
In cooperation with UNDP, UNHCR, UNICEF, FAO and OCHA, UN-Habitat seeks to
provide improved human security and living standards as well as durable solutions for
the reintegration and resettlement of IDPs and returnees in Bosasso. A particular focus
is 11,000 IDPs living in nine settlements near the town. Work includes upgrading
temporary settlements through spatial reorganization, improving access, the introduction
public lighting and fire prevention; interventions to improve access to justice for IDPs;
developing a legal framework for secure land tenure for IDPs; the establishment of legal
clinics in settlement areas; developing arrangements for land-sharing; the design and
installation of improved portable shelters; the elaboration of an urban development plan;
the planning of public infrastructure; the self-help construction of 550 permanent housing
units; the development of new financing mechanisms for housing; and the provision of
improved access to drinking water, sanitation and solid waste disposal services. A
flexible element in the Fund provided assistance with SUDP core team costs.

Support to Upgrading of Community Infrastructure in Mogadishu
UNHCR - USD197,537
September - December 2007
The objectives of this project were to improve the living conditions of the urban poor and
IDPs in Mogadishu; to create livelihood opportunities for them; and to strengthen
community-based partnerships while upgrading neighbourhood level infrastructure and
services. Activities included district level consultations between key stakeholders to
define common priorities; formulating action plans for the upgrading and rehabilitation of
public toilets, garbage collection points, water kiosk, and other public infrastructure.




                                            28
                              CAPACITY DEVELOPMENT

Several recommendations concerning the need for the training of municipal personnel
and the development of the municipal administrations were contained in the evaluation
report of the EU-funded, UN-Habitat implemented, Good Local Governance and
Leadership Training Programme. Some of these recommendations served as a basis
for the SUDP, especially those dealing with municipal finance. Others, particularly the
recommendations relating to the need for organization reform and management
development, were not taken up.

In the SUDP capacity development was seen as a cross-cutting feature taking shape
within other components and activities. Not being specifically identified as a programme
component, and not having an identified staff member in charge of it, may be the
reasons why most of this kind of work was contracted out to local partner organisations.
None of the international personnel recruited to the programme were selected with
regard to their skills as trainers or change agents.

For the urban planning component capacity development was affected negatively by the
fact that municipal officials were rarely able to spend a whole day in their office. The
very low salaries and the fact that these are not always paid, meant that the officials
were obliged by necessity to spend their time in other income earning activities. In
Puntland an added problem was that the professional personnel were political
appointees, so that when the Mayor changed so did the staff.

These problems notwithstanding, some progress was made. A limited number of
municipal officials assigned to the planning departments benefited from exposure to
basic planning techniques. Although they would not be able to discharge the planning
functions themselves, some do at lest now recognise the advantages that can be
obtained.

Programme personnel have estimated that 60 per cent of the training inputs provided by
the programme have been of the on-the-job kind. Several observers of the SUDP,
including for example Roberto Ottolengi in his Mid-Term Review, and Elijah Agevi in his
report on urban regulatory frameworks, have voiced concerns that much of the capacity
development of this kind that has taken place may be lost unless accompanied by more
formal training. The relationship between formal training and on-the-job training
deserves closer examination.

An approach used in several of the programme components was that the on-the-job
training was preceded by a formal training course. This model was followed for example
in the delivery of a 12-day course on the roles and responsibilities of municipal officials,
a course initiated under the GLTP but continued under the SUDP. At the time of the
evaluation the same approach was being used by the NGO PIDAM in Puntland, for the
training and support of personnel working in municipal finance. Provided that an action
plan was agreed with each trainee at the end of the course, and provided that follow up
was provided in the workplace to ensure that the plan was followed, the approach
worked well.

To be effective, any training programme requires an in-depth appreciation of the needs
of the target audience; the programme has to be well prepared and well delivered. A
matter frequently overlooked is that, whether for long term professional training or a


                                            29
short course, the design of good training programme is necessarily a time-consuming
business. For this reason, using trainers that are asked to fly in to a location, deliver
what they know and then fly out again, is rarely cost-effective.

Multiple exposures to a variety of short courses is perhaps better than nothing, but
inevitably, this leaves behind a patchwork quilt of ideas and information that may be only
half understood and not at all applied. Many Somalis who have been on the receiving
end of such offerings (not necessarily limited to the SUDP) claim to be tired to death of
workshops and short courses. On the other hand, there is a continuing thirst for good
training courses that offer something practical.

To overcome these difficulties a more strategic approach is called for, one that that is
based on a training needs analysis that is related to the specifics of the Somali
situation. 21 In particular, long-term professional training opportunities are required in the
range of disciplines that pertain to urban governance, the provision of urban planning
and urban services. Ideally, such training should be organised in Somalia, but
consideration may be given to providing opportunities also for study abroad, perhaps as
a component of a longer-term programme based in Somalia. In either case it is
important that that training bursaries be tied to both the trainee’s performance and his or
her application of the learned skills in the situation back at home.

In all three of Somalia’s geographical areas the participation of municipal councillors and
civil society representatives was extremely active. Many of these people spent a total of
up to 20 days in short training courses and workshops. In other countries counsellors
can be attracted to training sessions for only a few hours on one or two days. These
facts seem to indicate that most of the participants in the SUDP trainings did see some
value in them. Unlike many of the other UN programmes in Somalia, the SUDP
succeeded in motivating these people without paying a daily allowance.



                        THE MANAGEMENT OF RELATIONSHIPS


Relationships with Partner Organizations

The European Union

The principal donor – the EU – was extremely supportive of the process-oriented
approach adopted by the programme. This led, for example, to a redrafting of
cooperation agreements between UN-Habitat and both UNA and the ILO. Given the
evolving security situation the programme could not develop in all areas in the way that
was initially intended.




21
  The only situation where a training needs analysis was reported to have been carried out was
by or for the Somaliland Civil Service Institute, where it was decided to document the training
needs of civil servants.


                                               30
At the same time, the EU was concerned to see results. At the Second Steering
Committee Meeting, November 2006, it was recommended that relations with
Government be tightened up. 22 The SUDP Team, conscious of the absence of central
government personnel with whom it could deal, recommended maintaining the focus on
the local authorities.

UNDP

At the inception of the programme it was understood that UNDP would be responsible
for implementing, in the same areas as the SUDP, a parallel programme of public
administrative reform and provision of basic support to municipalities. This was to
include a re-structuring of the administration and training in office management. In fact,
this project did not materialise. 23 The institutional building component was a central
feature of the SUDP and its absence made it difficult for the programme to focus
technical capacity building, for example in the areas of planning and municipal finance.
While some progress was certainly made in these areas it was incidental to the SUPD’s
other roles; more could certainly have been achieved if the intended local governance
project had gotten underway. One must also note the danger that what has been
achieved may not fit comfortably with the kind of reforms that would be recommended by
future PAR specialists.

UNDP’s initial commitment to the programme was USD 1.5 million. However, as a result
of over-commitment and the pressure of other demands, UNDP was able to release a
total of only USD 1.3 million. This amount was divided into tranches much delayed and
subject to many meetings and negotiations between senior UN-HABITAT and UNDP
programme personnel. On the side of UN-Habitat it was found that the cost of
international personnel was more than had been anticipated, largely as a result of the
increasing cost of security measures and the fact that hazard allowances had not been
budgeted for. The result of these increasing costs, set against the shortfall in income,
meant that from mid-2007 the SUDP had to cut its staff.

UNA

For the purpose of implementing the SUDP UN-Habitat fashioned two other important
partnerships. The first of these was with UNA, a consortium of Italian NGOs, one of
whose members – Africa 70 – had a long history of working in Somalia. To strengthen
UN-Habitat’s submission in response to the EU’s call for proposals the Regional Office
(ROAAS) decided to form an alliance with UNA. This resulted ultimately in only one
proposal being submitted in response to the EU’s Call for Proposals. UNA provided
technical backstopping and supervisory services for the local project component. Within
the limits of the budget available to it, UNA also did excellent work with the programme’s
solid waste management component.

In the eventuality, UNA suffered from a variety of handicaps that seriously undermined
its ability to operate effectively in the field. Notwithstanding that its agreement with UN-
Habitat provided for the latter to vet nominated cv’s, UNA’s selection of personnel was

22
  In the words of the minute “No more mister nice guy”.
23
  Attention was drawn to the need for more cooperation in this area at the Second Meeting of the
Steering Committee, November 2006. However, the situation remained unchanged.



                                              31
less than optimal, leaving UN-Habitat with the burden of managing some of the activities
that UNA had proposed to take on. For example, UNA’s proposal, attached to the
agreement, provided for the organisation to make a contribution to improving municipal
finance and revenue collection. However, for this purpose no suitable staff was
proposed and no detailed implementation plan was discussed with UN-Habitat, which, in
due course, had to contract local NGOs to take on the role.

UNA’s costs were in part born from a contribution to the SUDP made by the Government
of Italy. Part of UNA’s contribution was to make available the services of university
professors from three Italian universities, all concerned with aspects of urban planning or
urban improvement. Although one of the universities was able to make available a
suitable technical person to provide training (in solid waste) in all other cases the experts
were unsuited to the very basic conditions pertaining in the specific Somali context and
/or were ill-prepared to make a suitable contribution.

In the early days of the programme the link between the SUDP programme office and its
partner organisations was not as effective as it might have been. In any event,
difficulties experienced by UNA in mobilising suitable personnel prevented the
organization from discharging its commitments in the way that had been expected. UN-
Habitat did not however withhold financial transfers to UNA for lack of performance. 24

International Labour Organisation

The second operational partnership for the SUDP with an international organisation was
with ILO. UN-Habitat believed that ILO’s experience in the area of local economic
development and community contracting could make a valuable contribution to the
programme. ILO did provide services in local economic profiling, including what it called
territorial diagnosis and institutional mapping. However, this work was much delayed
and the resulting reports – although comprehensive in coverage and professional in
presentation – were little used.

More successful was ILO’s training input to the setting up of associations of market
vendors and slaughterhouse users, and the training and advice that it provided to
municipalities participating in the UNA-led programme on solid waste management. In
these cases the emphasis was on helping to create self-sustaining business operations
with the development of a business plan and marketing strategy. To the extent that ILO
experienced problems in making a more strategic contribution to local economic
development, this was said to have been explained by personnel changes that took
place in the organisation’s Nairobi office.

Local Partnerships

Partnerships were formed by UN-Habitat with several service institutions. Among these
were the Somaliland Civil Service Institute and, later, Terre Solidali, both of which were
engaged for the training of Somaliland municipal officials in basic accounting and
computer operation. The Puntland Institute of Development and Management (PIDAM)
was engaged for a similar purpose in the North East.



24
     It did consider doing so, and issued a written caution to UNA.


                                                  32
For work on a local project in refitting the meat, fish and vegetable market Burao, FAO
was approached by a Planning Advisor engaged by UN-Habitat and invited to provide
assistance to improve arrangements for food hygiene. This included the provision of
cutting boards for vendor stations and wash hand basins with running water. It is
understood that FAO agreed to this request. However, in March 2008, three months
after all other work on the markets had been completed, this additional assistance had
not been forthcoming. As this was holding back the relocation of meat vendors into the
completed, improved market, from existing programme resources UN-Habitat undertook
to provide the necessary funds so that the work could be completed.


Relationships with Government Counterparts

It is important to draw a distinction between the kind of counterpart relationship that one
might see in more advanced developing countries and that that was possible in Somalia.
Determining programme content and direction through joint agency-government
decision- making processes was not possible. Government officials were not nominated
as programme directors or liaison persons, and programme work plans were not subject
to governmental approval. There was no representation of Government on the Steering
Committee and cooperation agreements with central government authorities were not
introduced by the programme until 2007. For these reasons the normal indicators of
government commitment did not apply. 25

From the beginning the SUDP was conceived as a programme that would work with and
support Somali municipalities. Within this framework, cooperation agreements were
signed between UN-Habitat and the municipalities of the four largest towns in both
Somaliland and Puntland. The agreements were fashioned in accordance with UN-
Habitat PSD’s normal procedures and took the form of a legal document that some have
judged to be unsuited to the Somali reality.

Although most local and regional governments supported SUDP activities in principal,
this support was selective and at times unstable. In the case of both the local projects
and urban planning activities, the political level was not always able to guarantee full
participation of their technical staffs. For a revision of the legal framework in Puntland
and especially in Somaliland, the will to promote open debate on land and urban
planning laws was definitely not there, at least in the early stages of the programme.




25
   Under the GLTP, programme documents listed the Ministries of Planning, Interior and Social
Development as partners for the programme, providing an enabling environment for local
development. In fact, the role of Ministries of Planning was marginal. In Somaliland the Ministry
of Interior, and in Puntland the Ministry of Local Government and Rural Development, were both
important actors although their substantive involvement was relatively small.


                                               33
                               PROGRAMME PLANNING

With the proposal to the European Union for the SUDP no logical framework was
submitted. It appears that such a framework was not required, a fact that in retrospect
can be considered unfortunate. A logical framework was developed April 2006 but
contained information only on outputs, proposed output indicators and activities.
Formulation of the indicators was weak and the distinction between an output and an
indicator not clearly understood. Some of the indictors were expressed as targets and
many were vague or unhelpful.

In June 2007 a valiant and long-overdue attempt was made to formulate a work plan for
the remaining programme period. The work plan was constructed using the initial logical
framework but with revised outputs. This document exhibited some of the earlier
difficulties in that, for example, outputs were sometimes confused with activities.
Individual field personnel have reported that they would have liked to have greater
opportunity to contribute to the definition of objectives, as some of those which were
selected - for example in the area of land reform - were, in retrospect, beyond the
possibility of achievement.

The concept of indicators can be understood in many ways. For the GLTP a handbook
was prepared entitled Development, collection and application of urban governance and
sub-city level indicators. This document takes its cue from the work of the Global Urban
Observatory, a UN-Habitat initiative that aims to record features of urban life in many
countries. Although the handbook was issued only in draft form, attempts were made to
utilise it within the framework of the SUDP. Unfortunately, the document was totally
unsuited to the circumstances in Somalia and the programme’s early efforts to introduce
the material did not meet with success.

Field level initiatives that were aimed at getting the municipalities to establish their own
success indicators floundered on the difficulty of finding Somali personnel who
understood what an indicator was and could help in training activities. It also seems
likely that the rejection of the Urban Governance and City Level Indicators detracted
unnecessarily from the need to develop management indictors that could have helped to
guide the programme in its subsequent development.

Given the fact that the indicators of achievement appearing in the logical framework
were not always clear or precise, one may trace the absence of systematic approach to
the difficulty of conceptualising the form that the outcomes would take. After all, in many
respects the programme was experimental in nature and what it would be reasonable to
expect could not always be defined ex-anti. With an adequate number of personnel,
outputs could have been tracked on a more regular basis. However, for most of the
period there existed a serious shortage of professionals with the necessary skills. In any
future programme it would be reasonable to expect that greater attention be given to
these issues.

On the other hand, with the exception of a contribution from DFID that allowed a more
efficient functioning of the SUDP’s substantive activities, most of the donor’s
contributions addressed needs in specific geographical areas or approached urban
problems from a particular standpoint. For example, the grant from UNICEF and UN-
OCHA was directed to work for the tsunami-affected Town of Xaafuun, while the
Japanese contribution sought to address the need for local building materials and


                                            34
building skills while creating local employment. Funds from UN-Habitat and the UN
Trust Fund for Human Security Protection were used for the reintegration and
resettlement of IDPs in Bossaso. The guidance that was extended by UN-Habitat did at
least help to avoid the risk of donors duplicating their efforts or, worse, working at cross-
purposes witih the same group of counterparts or beneficiaries.



                             PROGRAMME MANAGEMENT

Financial Management

The SUDP had no programme management office as such. Rather, its management
was undertaken by a small core team of UN-Habitat officials working from cramped
accommodation within the organization’s Nairobi headquarters. The grant from the EU
did not provide for the human resources necessary to run the office and UN-Habitat
benefited from no core funds. The result was that a substantial part of the time of the
programme’s headquarters personnel was spent in formulating project proposals and
dealing with a variety of donors in an attempt to attract supplementary funds. Relatively
little of this work was undertaken in the early days, and as time went on the pressures
mounted to bring in additional income.

Such an approach to programme financing was wasteful of the limited number of senior
personnel who were available. The preparation of multiple proposals adjusted to the
specific interests and requirements of many different donors not only absorbed the
valuable time of expensive staff, it also represented an unreasonable administrative
burden on the programme management. In the corridors of the UN system such an
arrangement may be considered normal, but it is no less wasteful for that.

The many sources of funding that eventually came to be available to the SUDP,
combined with their similarity of purposes, allowed the programme’s senior managers
some flexibility in the use of resources. On the other hand, the constantly increasing
financial envelope represented a challenge by virtue of the need to make frequent
adjustments to the leadership and administration of the programme. As the number of
personnel increased the mix also had to change. Developing an organogramme with
reporting lines that corresponded to donor’s requirement was difficult.

Borrowing from Peter’s pot to finance Paul’s commitments and then the reverse, and
keeping track of many separate lines of finance, was administratively burdensome.
Each donor required the preparation of an end of project report covering its particular
contribution, although on many occasions the contribution could not be separated out
from the total effort. A more unified budget would have reduced transaction costs, as
well as releasing programme managers to concentrate on strategic and other
management issues.

Following receipt of the grant from DFID it was possible for the SUDP to engage the
services of a Programme Management Officer and a second Administrative Assistant.
The services of the PMO helped greatly in reconciling the various financial flows against
expenditure and, in the process, identifying funds, which might otherwise have been
overlooked.



                                             35
The Management of Delays

Given the obstacles that had to be overcome, it is not surprising that delays arose in
many areas of programme implementation that were traceable to many different causes.
Key among these were delays in obtaining the transfer of funds committed by donors,
security concerns, and the difficulty of recruiting suitable field personnel and retaining
them. Whatever the specific reasons for a particular delay, the perception of the mayors
and the government officials who were interviewed during the course of the evaluation
was that much was promised at the commencement of the programme but that there
were many unexplained delays in implementation.

Field personnel have done their best to communicate what they know of the reasons for
the many delays, but they too are largely ignorant of the reasons why what was
promised could not be delivered in a timely manner. Personnel visiting from the Nairobi
office have tried to fill the gap, but the impression left is that UN-Habitat is long on
promises and short on delivery. A community in point was Gardho, Puntland, where the
Mayor cited four inputs “promised” by the programme of which, in his opinion, only one
had so far been delivered. The four expected benefits of cooperating with the SUDP
were a market, a slaughterhouse, a garbage collection and disposal facility, and a
community centre. Of these, at the time of the interview only the slaughterhouse and
municipal offices (not mentioned by the Mayor) were under construction.

Such complaints must been seen in context. First, claims that the SUPD “promised” to
support certain activities are likely to be exaggerated, if not completely spurious. The
making of such claims can be seen as a Somali bargaining strategy aimed commonly at
securing additional resources. Secondly, notwithstanding strenuous efforts on the part
of visiting programme officials, it would be surprising if there were not some residual and
genuine misunderstanding. In the example cited, the garbage collection and disposal
facility is to be addressed by CESVI (UNA) under the upcoming SISDIC Project, which
has been delayed due to the late release of funds. Finally, the ever-changing security
situation has meant that, in many places – including in Gardho - it has taken much
longer to deliver the benefits that was originally intended.

The fact that the execution of programme activities fell almost entirely to UN-Habitat and
its local partners undoubtedly reinforced the authorities’ sense of dependency and
increased their irritation with a situation over which they had little or no control. In any
future programme it is recommended that a more concerted effort be made to explain to
field personnel and to counterparts alike the reasons behind the operational difficulties
that are encountered and that, where apologies seem to be called for, they are
extended.

UN-Habitat enjoys no legal framework under which it may implement programmes in
collaboration with partner organisations. Contracting and procurement, agreements of
cooperation (AoCs), and the recruitment of international consultants were therefore
handled by UN-Habitat’s Programme Support Division (PSD) and UNON-PTSS. The
setting up of cooperation agreements took an amount of time that was seriously
inconvenient to programme personnel and to their municipal and community
counterparts. Delays in the approval of AoCs and subcontracts took anything between
two weeks (the most favourable case) and six months. This proved to be a burden both



                                             36
for the communities that were being assisted as well as for some of UN-Habitat’s partner
organisations. 26

NGOs – which have limited reserves from which to pay salaries - are particularly
disadvantaged by delays in disbursing funds for services that they provide. Major delays
are caused by lack of proper documentation from the partner’s side, limited support
available to assist them in the preparation of these documents and, in some cases,
delays in certification due to the inability of project personnel to travel to site.

Funds contributed by the Government of Italy for the SISDISC project were passed
though the Commission of the European Union. This resulted in a delay of almost 12
months before the funds became available to the programme. During the course of the
evaluation the reasons for the delay could not be ascertained. However, it is understood
that the Italian Government commissioned an investigation of the problem and has
resolved in the future to use other channels. 27

For Puntland, financial and administrative relationships with the programme office in
Nairobi were (and are) mediated through the programme office in Hargeisa. In the early
days this was felt to be necessary in view of relatively weak financial transfer and
management arrangements available to Garowe and Bosasso, 28 and because the
programme office in Hargeisa was able to relieve the pressure on the Nairobi staff for
such tasks as checking transferring funds and checking financial reports. By programme
personnel based in Puntland this arrangement has been found both inconvenient and
insulting.

Inconvenience arose from the extra delay that was occasioned by the need to pass
documents and funds through the office in Hargeisa. The perceived insult arose
because people in Puntland regard Somaliland as the enemy. Putting money into
Somaliland was seen as a threat to Puntland. Although the Hargeisa office has no
financial or technical supervisory role over Bosasso or Garowe offices and only acts as a
pass-through station for the financial administration, it is suggested that if the Puntland
authorities were to become aware that the UN-Habitat Bosasso office was required to
deal with the programme office in Somaliland, then the former of the two would be
closed down. 29




26
   Terre Solidali being a case in point. Cooperation agreements were signed with other
international NGOs as well as with ILO.
27
   It is understood that the investigation was not limited to UN-Habitat and the disbursement of
SISDISC funds.
28
   It is understood that the human resource and money transfer system now available in Bosasso
is much improved, such that arrangements could be made there if now required.
29
   This somewhat dramatic assertion can be interpreted as the Puntland staffers exerting
pressure in favour of being delegated greater autonomy. However, according to the Nairobi
office, these same personnel have not so far been able to adhere to the financial management
regulations to which they are subject.



                                               37
Human Resources Management

Paucity of Personnel

One of the obstacles standing in the way of effective management of the programme
was the relatively few personnel that were available, both in the field and in the Nairobi
office. The problem was particularly acute given the geographical scope and multi-
component nature of the programme. On the administrative side, until early 2006 when
DFID provided necessary funds, the SUDP Nairobi office had no Programme
Management Officer and only one Administrative Assistant. Until that time the
programme’s senior technical personnel were required to handle all administrative
aspects of the programme, including its financial management.

This, apparently, was a result of a limitation imposed by EU on the use of its funds, that
could not be applied more than 30 per cent to personnel costs. Additionally, recurring
difficulties were experienced in recruiting personnel for the positions that became
available. In some countries field programmes can manage with a relatively limited
number of personnel; this is not the case in Somalia, where the level of acquaintance
with modern management practices and programmes of international cooperation is very
limited.

Fast growth in the budget envelope and the consequent need to expand the number of
personnel in the programme team, meant that the management of human resources
became a time-consuming business. Most of the initial SUDP team came from UN-
Habitat’s earlier projects: in 2003 there were two or three international and five or six
national personnel. By mid-2007 this number had grown to 15 internationals and 20
nationals. Staff costs over the three year programme period are reported as Annex 5.

The fact that there was no internationally appointed officer in charge of the UN-Habitat
office in either Garowe or Bosasso was a source of concern to the Government of
Puntland, to UN-Habitat’s national staff and, reportedly, to representatives of other UN
agencies that operate in the area. Neither the national personnel nor the visiting
international consultants were authorised to make decisions on behalf of the programme
management, a fact that not only slowed down implementation but was also resented by
some of those who would otherwise have been able to play a more significant role.
Additionally, national programme personnel in Garowe and Bosasso expressed regret
that they were not invited to play a part in regular monitoring exercises, such as the
carrying out of quarterly reviews.

Recruitment, Selection and Retention of Personnel

Contrary to theories concerning the importance of robust systems, it is usually the case
that a development programme of the kind managed by UN-Habitat is only as good as
the personnel who are recruited to staff it. One of the lessons learned from the SUDP is
that a good mix of national and international personnel has a significant impact on team
performance. The best international personnel tended to be those who had in-depth
knowledge and experience of the culture. For work in Somalia the recruitment of
Kenyan Somalis proved to be particularly efficacious.




                                            38
Whatever the expert’s technical ability, knowing how to package the offering seems to
have been key to success. In cases where there was no response from the counterpart
then programme personnel had to step in and extend the necessary leadership. This
was not always effective, in that the reasons for non-cooperation by the counterpart
were not always apparent, but teaching by demonstrating the possibilities was
sometimes the only way forward.

One of the SUDP’s most conspicuous successes was in the GIS /Land Management
component. This can be explained by three factors. First, the appointee to the post of
Project Manager was knowledgeable in the land management field and, by virtue of his
experience in neighbouring Kenya, was able to provide many concrete examples of
problems and solutions that were easily understood by his Somali counterparts.
Secondly, the appointee was able and willing to stay on the job for the relatively long
period of two years, enabling him to build a rapport that gave credence to his advice.
Thirdly, the analysis, advice and support provided to Government by the Project
Manager was conceptualised as part of a process that necessarily took time: it was not a
one-shot injection of advice that could be ignored. The drip-feed approach worked much
better than was possible in those cases where the advisor came for only two or three
months and then quit the scene.

The early years of the programme were marred by the appointment to the role of Chief
Technical Advisor of a person from UN-Habitat, who, in retrospect, was clearly unsuited
to the role. An Inception Report was prepared but in terms that did not help in the
detailed management of the programme. Aside from this, and prior to June 2006, little
serious work planning took place; that which was done was kept secret from the body of
the programme staff. The lack of effective communication between the CTA and all
other personnel led to a deteriorating operational climate, one that seriously undermined
the possibility of teamwork. During this period UN-Habitat’s ROAAS provided more
support and oversight than was subsequently necessary. Nevertheless, one may
conjecture that a more rigorous selection procedure, together with more effective
managerial oversight at an earlier date would have prevented the near total collapse of
staff morale. 30

The guidance extended by other senior programme management personnel in Nairobi to
field staff was provided either though personal visits or through the sending of short
discussion notes. Supervisory field visits occupied half the time of two of the Nairobi-
based personnel. Prior to a change in CTA June 2007 there was an overload of email
communication, as the management guidelines encouraged email-based discussions.
This was reduced when communication lines were simplified and increasing authority
was delegate to field-based personnel.




30
  In respect of managerial oversight it has been reported, for example, that the Mid-Term report
prepared by Roberto Ottolenghi, July 2006, was not released to programme personnel for several
months. The report contains material that, for the effective implementation of the programme,
would better have been released immediately. The fact that this was not done reflects poorly on
the organization’s commitment to successful implementation of the programme. It appears,
rather, that the protection of an incompetent staff member was considered to be of greater
importance.


                                              39
The recruitment of international personnel was problematic. First, to many potential
applicants Somalia did not appear as a very attractive duty station; security risks were a
common concern. Secondly, the recruitment procedures available through the
ROAAS/PSD/UNON were very slow. Third, although international field workers were
available for the more humanitarian kind of operation, development work in an
environment where the population was often apathetic and sometimes hostile offered
little appeal. The level of applicants was generally very low. Although some senior
personnel with significant international experience did apply, the funds available were
insufficient to secure their services.

The recruitment of national personnel was also problematic. In particular, it was difficult
to find Somalis who could be trained up as trainers and, even when individuals could be
identified for such a role, the lack of job security tended to result is their disappearance
from the programme.

Initially the programme was set up in the field initially using mostly junior international
personnel. EU restrictions on the use of budget meant that it was possible to provide
only a limited number of senior technical personnel, who then worked though occasional
field visits. This arrangement was less than satisfactory. The arduous working
conditions, the challenge of working with recalcitrant counterparts, anxieties over
security, 31 heavy travel schedules, less than attractive terms and conditions of
employment and, in the early days of the programme, the lack of proper leadership -
undermining morale, all contributed to a high staff turnover. Generally those who were
recruited on one-year contracts survived for only one and a half or two years before they
began to suffer from physical and psychological “burn out”.

Terms and conditions of service were a particular problem affecting staff retention.
Notwithstanding that international personnel recruited to work with the SUDP were
regarded as staff members, the type of contract on offer was limited to the Special
Service Agreement (SSA) category. This meant that the individual was entitled to
almost no benefits other than salary, i.e. no job security, no medical insurance, no rest
and recuperation allowance, and no home leave. 32, 33

From this confluence of circumstances the result was that in the space of three years,
the shelter project in Hargeisa had five Project Managers, a factor that contributed to the
slow place of implementation. Puntland was provided with two Urban Planners in
succession. 34 Somaliland had two planners working in different towns; when both left a
third planner was posted to work to a more limited remit. The Solid Waste Management




31
   The management of security issues was an obstacle mainly in Puntland and the South Central
part of the country. In some areas people were often antagonistic towards outsiders. From time
to time programme personnel were subject to threatening behaviour and often felt insecure.
32
   Neither the international nor the national personnel were entitled to hold a UN laissez passer.
For the nationals this presented problems in obtaining visas, for example Somalis who needed to
travel to Kenya to visit the programme office.
33
   With the introduction of the L type (200 series) contract the situation is reported to have
improved.
34
   A third urban planner was attached to the IDP/Shelter project in Bossaso (not a SUDP
commitment).


                                                40
Programme had a total of four Project Manager in three years, all employed by UNA. 35
The high turnover was particularly striking among the international personnel, but
national personnel also exhibited a tendency to jump ship when the opportunity arose to
join an organisation that offered contracts with better service conditions.

The failure in human resource management was unfortunate, for it was only after about
two years of service that the individual recruit reached his or her most productive level;
work in Somalia requires a long learning curve. Given that the terms of engagement of
the international personnel did not encourage them to stay, this created additional work
for programme management in finding and recruiting replacements. Longer-term
engagements would have benefited all parties, not least the Somali counterparts who
were called upon to adjust to a revolving cast of players. 36

Some of the programme’s activities suffered from delays in hiring suitably qualified
consultants. For the programme’s land component, for example, a key consultant was
engaged only 15 months after the start of the programme. 37 An earlier review of the
situation would have helped to avoid a waste of effort where a GIS cadastral survey was
launched without proper preparation. 38

From the point of view of the national programme personnel, a more serious difficulty
was that many of the international personnel came to the field for relatively short periods.
Missions seemed to be always for very limited periods of time – usually of the order of
two to four weeks. 39 This, combined with challenging logistics and delays arising from
the need to heed security measures, reduced further the time available for real work.
Advisors who came for slightly longer periods would arrive, embark on some new
activity, and then leave without seeing their part of the project through to completion. On
occasions they took their work home with them, leaving behind little or nothing that could
be followed up. This lack of continuity between successive international inputs was
embarrassing for national programme personnel who had to pick up the pieces or make
excuses to counterparts, and it did little to enhance the image of the organisation in the
eyes of the municipalities. 40

To support the SUDP, ROAAS provided a range of technical inputs. These included
three people to work in Somalia on land issues for a total of four-person months.
Technical advice was also available from UN-Habitat’s Shelter Branch, its Training and

35
   Some differences of opinion have been registered as to why individual staff members left the
programme, and whether this was a good thing or bad. Some opine that the project managers
who left were the ones whose services were less valuable.
36
   It has been pointed out that the SUDP benefited from more than two years of service from a
core group of six technical personnel; also that the experience of other agencies working in
Somalia has been even more difficult than encountered by UN-Habitat. Whether this second
observation be true or false, informants nevertheless believe that the problems described are
ones that it would be worth addressing.
37
   Refers to consultant Mr Michael Barry.
38
   Encountering problems in Hargeisa, the structure for the property database had to be changed
midway through the programme - with the consequent need for a time-consuming verification
process.
39
   The R&R cycle in Somaliland was six weeks and in Puntland four weeks. Thus, international
personnel might not consider a mission of four week to be particularly short.
40
   The situation was clearly more difficult in Puntland than in Somaliland. The programme in
there had to cope with many interruptions and, inevitably, some resulting discontinuities.


                                              41
Capacity Building Branch, the Information and Publications Section, and the Global
Urban Observatory. Although welcome, these inputs did not however answer the
underlying need, which was for an adequate allocation of funds that could be used to
attract high quality personnel willing to commit to work in Somalia long term. 41



                                PRINCIPAL CONCLUSIONS


The Strategic Approach

The SUDP in Context

Three years is a very short time in which to achieve the developments for which the
SUDP was striving. Yet in understanding the impact of the SUDP it is important to
recognise that the programme was one of 27 projects that UN-Habitat had implemented
in the same area during the past 25 years. Earlier projects were more circumscribed in
locus and /or in purpose, but some of these – for example the GLTP that immediately
preceded the SUDP - paved the way. The emphasis of the GLTP was on training and
capacity building for good governance at municipal level. Many town counsellors
participated in that training and subsequently, under the SUDP, became champions of
the programme’s purposes.

The success of the SUDP has depended to a great extent on the political and social
conditions prevailing in different parts of the country; regional differences in governance
have impacted on the results. While Somaliland has established structures and a
functioning bureaucracy based more or less on democratic principles, the more recent
arrangements in Puntland are fragile. The South Central part of the country is so
conflicted that the programme was able to do relatively little in that area . Given these
circumstances, the SUDP can be judged a success in terms of being able to work on all
its components and gain recognition, at least in those areas where security conditions
permitted.

The programme struggled to balance two conflicting requirements: the need to secure
community decision making and Somali-driven implementation that allowed of capacity
development while, at the same time, ensuring that the programme produced quality
outputs and proceeded at an acceptable pace. Achievement of both objectives was
hampered by the limited motivation of many of the local government counterparts,
especially given their abysmal terms and conditions of service. As the value of planning
and design methods was not immediately apparent to community leaders, their
introduction also required persuasion and tenacity on the part of programme personnel.
Most of the local counterparts lacked basic office management and computer skills,
which further reduced that role that they could play. These difficulties applied equally to


41
   It may be helpful to observe that, for long term consultants and contractors, UN-Habitat along
with other agencies of the United Nations system and the European Union, is competing in an
international market. Alternative engagements in, for example Afghanistan, Iraq, Sudan, or Timor
Leste, are being remunerated at rates in the range of USD 27,500 – 33,500 per month plus
benefits. These are the rates paid to individuals, not to companies.


                                               42
local projects, urban planning, solid waste management, and activities for developing
municipal finance.

Intervention Strategies Negotiated According to Local Circumstances

Finding an entry point for the programme’s work was a challenge. In addressing
planning issues each urban situation had to be addressed according to need. In some
case, for example in Bosasso, this was accessibility and transportation. In other
locations, it was garbage disposal, or water supply. From these starting points an
attempt was made to widen the discussion in the direction of other urban planning
issues. Naturally, the extent and speed with which this could be done varied from place
to place.

One of the most impressive achievements of the programme has been its ability to build
a sense of confidence and trust among counterparts at all levels: government, municipal
and community, as well as with the international community. This has not always been
achieved easily or without acrimony, but generally it has been achieved. This is
attributable in part to the inclusive, consultative style of work that has been adopted by
the programme personnel, and in part to the fact that what has been done has been in
accordance with agreements that have been fashioned along the way. In other words, a
blueprint approach to activities has been avoided in favour of a constantly negotiated
approach. Although this has resulted in a somewhat untidy collection of outputs and
outcomes, those that have been achieved undoubtedly provide a basis for ongoing and
hopefully sustainable activities in ways that would not otherwise have been achieved.

The participatory approach was found to be highly appropriate to the Somali context.
Even in the urban areas many of the traditional values of the nomadic society persist.
People enjoy group life and can derive enormous pleasure from group discussions.
Bringing together different elements in the society was much valued. This allowed the
building of trust in an environment where, after 19 years of conflict, fear and mistrust has
become the norm. These interactions also provided legitimacy for the programme and
for the messages that it was trying to communicate. All in all, everyone benefited from
the democratic approach.

The Process Approach to Institutional and Community Development

Among programme personnel a debate raged for some time on the respective merits of
the process approach to the work, versus the blueprint approach that seems to belong
more to the world of purposeful planning, logical frameworks, success indicators and
work plans. For effective community work of any kind, the first approach is inescapable.
Furthermore, where an organization has no power to impose its will, the participatory
approach is the only one that stands any chance of success.

Unfortunately the SUDP fudged these distinctions. On the one hand the process
approach was used throughout, while on the other a rather week attempt was made to
draw up a logical framework and a work plan. Until June 2007 these did not however
appear to have been used as management tools. Future programmes of this type must
get to grips with the need for operational planning and task management while working
to a flexible, creative and participatory script. As Roberto Ottolenghi explained in his
Mid-Term Review of July 2006, the two approaches are not incompatible. On the other
hand serious efforts are required to integrate the two.


                                            43
Given the bottom-up community participation approach used in the SUDP, the three-
year time frame adopted for the programme appears ridiculously short. It was
understood that there might be further iterations of the programme, and the need to
maintain all aid to Somalia on a short leash is understandable. Nevertheless, for this
type of programme it would be helpful to be able to work with a longer-term perspective.

Examples of Local Initiative Supported by the SUDP

In Hargeisa at the behest of the Mayor, under the GLTP as well as under the SUDP, five
District Development Committees were established. The primary objective of the DDCs
is to encourage participatory project planning by involving local communities in the
process. The committees are also to assist the municipality to address social needs
while providing engines for the mobilisation of additional resources. The DDCs spawned
supporting Neighbourhood Committees that also have a key role in fund raising. Where
a project idea comes from the municipality then the DDC may contribute around 20 per
cent of the cost; where the idea for a project comes from the district or neighbourhood
level, then the negotiated contribution might be as much as 60 per cent.

As already mentioned, in many cases the Neighbourhood Committees were led by
counsellors, community elders and business people who had participated in the GLTP
training on good governance. Under the SUDP additional training was provided by ILO
and by NOVIB. Although initially composed of persons nominated by the District
Governors, the DDC are now made up of elected representatives from the
Neighbourhood Committees. The NCs are composed of one elected representative per
block of 20 households. In line with the overwhelming Somali practice, the committees
are dominated almost entirely by men.

One of the most interesting achievements of the SUDP has been provision of support for
the establishment of the Somaliland Municipal Association. Leadership for the initiative
has come from the Mayor of Hargeisa, a relatively sophisticated businessman with wide
international experience. Of Somaliland’s 12 districts, seven have so far paid the small
subscription necessary to join the Association, while five are expected to do so very
soon. The Association’s purpose is to stimulate a sharing of experience between the
different municipalities so that all may move forward together. A common training
programme is also envisaged. Several meetings have already taken place. With help
from UN-Habitat a small office is being constructed in Hargeisa for the Association’s use.

A Good Governance Programme by another Name

Although the SUDP was not billed as a governance programme it can be seen as a
precursor to such. As will be understood from the information immediately above, many
aspects of the programme succeeded in strengthening linkages between stakeholders.
Roles and responsibilities were redefined, especially for municipal officials in the eyes of
the community. In this process, elements of a desirable transparent public service were
laid down. The programme helped to raise awareness and develop attitudes and simple
skills, without which more serious work in the area would be unlikely to take root.

The SUDP’s early negative experience in trying to preach the necessity of reforming the
land law is testament to the fact that a full frontal approach to burning issues does not
necessarily work. To this extent the programme can be considered to have been a kind


                                            44
of development laboratory. Provided that the lessons of experience are captured,
preserved and made available for future generations of UN-Habitat personnel, then the
programme can be considered to have been a good investment.

Value for Money from the SUDP

On the issue of whether the SUDP represented good value for money, the answer can
be found only by comparison with other similar development efforts currently underway
in Somalia. The special feature of the SUDP was its emphasis on practical work with the
maximum possible involvement of the municipal authorities and local communities.
Certain NGOs engage in similar work and do so with considerable success. Indeed,
some of the local species partnered the SUDP in the field. 42

The NGO community often - and sometimes with justice - criticises the UN system for
being, slow, high cost, and staffed by personnel who are disconnected from the reality
on the ground. On the other hand, few NGOs are free from problems of their own and
almost none have access to resources on the scale that were entrusted to UN-Habitat.
Furthermore, it appears unlikely that any other programme, NGO, bi- or multi-lateral,
would have been as successful as was the SUDP in bringing together such a wide range
of stakeholders, both in the field and in the donor community.

UN-Habitat claims that it has facilitated in Hargeisa over a period of three years an
increase in municipal income of 285 per cent, equivalent to more than USD 200,000 per
year in revenues domestically raised. If correct, this would almost certainly represent
good value for money. Judgement on such issues would be easier if it were possible to
compare such outcomes with the real costs. Few development agencies bother to
install cost-accounting systems that could track costs against outputs. With such a
multi-component programme with many cross-applications of resources, as happened
on the SUDP, this would have been difficult although not impossible. Large private
sector business do not shy away from the need to attribute costs to outcomes and the
more sophisticated government systems of the world seek to embrace similar
approaches. There is no obvious reason why a development agency should not do so.

The Advantages of an Umbrella

As explained, the SUDP was and is an umbrella programme that allowed a variety of
donors to contribute to different aspects of Somali urban development. To this extent it
was reasonable to expect that individual donors’ contributions would be applied to
advancing the overall purposes of the programme. With variations, project
documentation justifying donor contributions acknowledged this fact. This allowed the
application of resources from the different sources to be used in a more flexible way than
might normally occur. 43 The arrangement has worked well and is to be recommended in
all similar programmes in the future. It may however be convenient to include a specific
“flexibility provision” in all donor agreements fashioned under an umbrella arrangement.




42
  An excellent example is SAACIID, formerly headquartered in Mogadishu.
43
  The arrangement was not however unique to the SUDP; similar cross-trading of resources
occurred with the GLTP and SPAUS project.


                                             45
The SUDP provided a broad canvas to which a variety of donor organizations could
make contributions. In the programme documents this canvas is described as a
“framework” but the terminology is exaggerated: no actual framework can be detected,
either thematic or spatial. From the point of view of UN-Habitat, a large basket helps it
to implement its mandate. Globally, UN-Habitat works with five focus areas and under
its new country programme for Somalia the organisation has chosen three pillars:
governance and service delivery; shelter and IDPs; and reconstruction and rehabilitation.
One umbrella programme to cover all of these areas is much more convenient than
many individual projects.

UN-Habitat as a Key Local Player

By virtue of its several projects and programmes that have extended now over a period
of several years, in the field of local government development in Somalia UN-Habitat is
regarded by both central government and the municipalities as being the most significant
partner available to them. For the future, government spokespersons like the idea of
building on what has already been done rather than beginning afresh with new
initiatives. This does not mean that a consolidation and a refining of the existing SUDP
activities would not be welcome, in fact quite the reverse. But the element of trust that
has been built up between UN-Habitat and its national and local counterparts is a
resource that all would do well to recognise. Strategy and methods may evolve, but in
Somali society, where personal relationships are so important, the bonds residing in
familiarity and trust count for a lot.

Community Driven Development

At the time the evaluation was being carried out, March 2008, World Bank, UNICEF,
Danish Refugee Council and DIFID were occupied in reviewing a Community Driven
Development (CDD) programme that was being piloted in Berbera and Boroma districts
of Somaliland. UN-Habitat is a member of a consortium of six organisations with an
interest in the programme, which is being implemented by UNICEF and DRC under the
auspices of the Somaliland Ministry of Family and Social Development. Much
discussion has taken place on the relative merits of the CDD approach compared to that
that has informed the SUDP.

Basically, the discussion turns on one’s preferences for working from the top-down, i.e.
providing resources through municipalities, versus a bottom-up approach that involved
putting a local development fund at the disposal of local communities. These are not
competing but rather complementary approaches. Even if communities can be
mobilised to do what, in most countries, falls to local government, there will always be a
need for the kind of urban services that only municipalities can reasonably provide.
Working from both the bottom and the top side of the equation makes eminent sense.

This appreciation notwithstanding, from a programmatic perspective there is clearly a
need for a careful analysis of the inter-relationships that need to exist between the CDD
and the SUDP-type approach, particularly as concerns the desirable scheduling of
inputs. Racing ahead with the application of only one approach is likely to create
imbalances and dissatisfactions that could be more divisive than productive. Dealing




                                            46
with the jealousies and resentments existing between the relevant Ministries will also be
necessary. 44


Important Lessons

The Need to be Realistic in Aspirations

The SUDP proceeded under a lot of different but often combined pressures. These
included multiple components in the initial design with others being added as the work
progressed; objectives that were extremely ambitious given the prevailing socio-political
realities and uncertainties; deliverables that were poorly specified, to be produced in a
very limited three year time frame; the difficult of engaging suitable personnel, and a
heavy workload for those who were engaged; weak counterparts; and a geographical
scope that encompassed numerous municipalities and communities scattered across
three “mini countries” having quite distinct political, economic and social complexions.

Some advances have been made and some achievement realised, but often at a cost
much greater than that which was initially foreseen. While a case can be made out for
aiming high in order to achieve modest gains, it would make more sense to specify in
advance only those achievements that can realistically be achieved. The original
proposal to the EU for grant funds appears in places to take the form of a public relations
document rather than a description of what is to be achieved. While the pressures that
lead in this direction are understandable, the obvious discontinuity between the
commitment of public funds and actual delivery is disturbing. The making of more
modest claims that acknowledge the difficulties of operating in Somalia would, in the
long term, redound positively to the credibility of both the implementing organisation and
the donor.

The Need for a Systems Approach to Capacity Development

In the Somali context it is nether sufficient either to train officials or to train trainers. In
the absence of a whole host of other factors being in place (supportive leadership from
the elected counsellors, job incentives for the officials, and ongoing employment for the
trainers) isolated and time limited inputs are unlikely to succeed. Building sustainable
capacity in local government institutions is a larger, more complex and more time
consuming challenge than most aid organizations are willing to countenance. To be
successful it is necessary to make a commitment of the order of 10 to 15 years, not one
two or three years, as is customarily the practice.

The Need for Steering Committees to Steer

The original design for the SUDP included provision for a Steering Committee composed
of representatives from the EU, UNDP and UN-Habitat, and a Programme Management
Committee composed of the EU, UNICEF, UNDP, ILO, UN-Habitat, UNA and NOVIB. In
practice, meetings of the Steering Committee included all member of the Management


44
  The Ministry of Interior, which carries responsibility for local government, did not attend the
recent Hargeisa workshop on the CDD programme, and in any case is reported to be
unsupportive of the approach.


                                                 47
Committee. From February 2006 DFID also participated in these meetings, which were
held half-yearly.

A review of Steering Committee Reports suggests a poor articulation between the issues
that were raised by programme personnel and guidance coming from the Committee. In
its Introductory Note to the second Steering Committee Meeting of November 2006
(dated 27 October), for example, programme personnel raised the issue of the need or
monitoring mechanisms that would be “endorsed officially by the donors”. The same
document asked for a clear policy to be established by key donors on adopting “a less
compliant and more demanding attitude [to Government].” While these themes were
touched upon in the Committee’s discussions, it is not at all clear that the Committee
was either able to extend the necessary guidance, or that the programme personnel
subsequently reported back to the Committee on progress made. This last point was
also true in respect of a recommendation emerging from the Second Meeting that
training activities be subject to more thorough evaluation.

While there may have been good reasons for these apparent discontinuities, the
question in left hanging in the air is what is or should be the role of a Steering
Committee. For the future it would be helpful to establish whether programme personnel
are required to report back to the Committee on the measures that have been taken to
improve programme performance in light of the recommendations made at earlier
meetings. Greater discipline in formulating and /or recording the substance of the
Committee’s recommendations would also help in obtaining value for money from the
members’ participation. There is no point in wasting the valuable time of senior agency
officials in order merely to add legitimacy to a process that contributes little to
programme performance.

The Need for a Modern Approach Human Resources Management

With one or two exceptions, staff training has not generally been a feature of the SUDP.
In the Hargeisa office early provision was made for an English language teacher.
However, a lack of commitment on the part of the staff resulted in the teacher being
withdrawn. This problem notwithstanding, national programme personnel are now much
concerned by the lack of training opportunities, and compare themselves unfavourably
with personnel working for other UN agencies. Among the topics on which they would
like to receive training are (for a driver) English language and security procedures; and
(for national project officers) community development skills, office administration, project
monitoring and evaluation, and contract drafting.

The UN system is characterised by a fierce control culture. This is common to civil
service institutions worldwide – and of course the UN describes itself as an international
civil service. But this is not one well suited to facilitating social development or working
for institutional change in developing countries. Modern organizations that deal with
change, including most of the major non-governmental development organisations,
invest heavily in the professional development of their staff. Within the UN system this
does not generally happen, it being assumed that personnel are recruited already expert
in their field. The result is that the organisation does not reap full benefit from the
relatively expensive human resources that it takes on board. Field personnel have much
more to give than they are permitted to contribute within the present controlling
environment. Personnel are aware of this and complain at their frustration and the
waste of time and effort that this entails. UN-Habitat at least should strive for a more


                                            48
modern and effective operational culture, one that is willing to invest in its people and, in
so doing, deliver greater benefits - and faster than is possible right now.

The Need to Record Lessons Learned

The GLTP, a predecessor programme to the SUDP, experienced many of the same
problems that were faced by its successor. One of these, for example, was that in order
to make anything happen in the field, an unexpected amount of backstopping and
support had to be provided by the field office. This meant that the personnel assigned to
the programme were insufficient to the task. Parallel to this, given the large distances
involved in travel between the localities where work was to be carried out, the budget
available was also insufficient. These lessons appear not to have been learned at the
design stage of the SUDP, a fact that resulted in a continuation of the same type of
problems.

A claim appearing in early programme documents was that the SUDP was to provide a
“laboratory for capacity development, highlighting the structural difficulties in local
delivery processes and identifying the main constrains” that would need to be
addressed. 45 Although, as explained, a process approach is one that was adopted
throughout, there is no evidence that the learning that must surely have taken place
resulted in any sustainable institutional record. Personnel have come and gone, but
what has remained behind in terms of institutional memory is certainly less than might
have been secured if the concept of a “laboratory” had been taken as more than
romantic rhetoric.

The Need for Ongoing Engagement

Among the tasks that lie ahead for any future programme, it will be essential to support
the local authorities in establishing systems for property survey and flexible tariff
structures that will meet their growing need for income. In this connection, a Ministerial
Decree will be required that will regulate and guide such structures. Implementing
accounting and billing software and setting up enforcement arrangements are also
crucial measures, both for moving towards more transparent municipal governance and
for providing a sense of legitimacy to the operations. In this area the risk of sliding back
from the gains already made should not be underestimated. With a new crop of
counsellors that have not been exposed to the principles of good governance, or
received training in any of the requisite procedures, programme failure is a more serious
possibility than many of the existing programme personnel would wish to acknowledge.


Inter-Institutional Relationships

Relationships with Partner Organisations

In dealing with a variety of partner organisations UN-Habitat’s experience was less than
satisfactory. Notwithstanding the successes achieved, programme performance was
badly affected by a failure of partners to manage the supply of funds in timely manner;
by a failure to meet financial commitments freely entered into; and by a failure to recruit

45
 E.g. Somalia Urban Development Programme, 3rd Steering Committee Meeting Report, UN-
Habitat, 20 June 2007, p11.


                                             49
and support in the field international personnel of adequate quality. On the side of UN-
Habitat too, its operation under the administrative system imposed by the UN Secretariat
and the UN Office in Nairobi introduced serious limitations - for example in the issuance
of contracts, as well as unacceptable delays - for example in effecting payments, which
were inimical to the success of the programme. The failure of UN-Habitat to provide
adequate leadership for the programme in the early days also did little to foster a
collective approach.

From the experience of working with the Government of Italy, UNA and its three
associated Italian universities, one can conclude that it was unwise for UN-Habitat to
select a partner organisation on the basis merely of reported experience in the region.
Incorporating potential competitors in proposals to donors (as UNA was incorporated in
UN-Habitat’s proposal to the EU) makes sense only where the organisation concerned
has a proved track record in managing successful international projects. UNA was a
recently established consortium of Italian NGOs and although at least one of its
members had a track record in the region, there was no indication whatsoever that UNA
could supply either competent management or good quality technical assistance. The
subsequent problems encountered can be attributed to this lack of care in partner
selection.

Donors’ Conditionality Inimical to Programme Performance

The Italian Government’s expectation that technical assistance be procured from Italian
NGO sources was a limiting factor on the performance of the programme. The current
international trend is away from such limitations towards the creation of a free
international market for technical expertise. With hindsight, it was unfortunate that UN-
Habitat did not challenge the apparent limitation.

As explained, the SUDP suffered greatly from delays in the deposit of funds to its
account. The transfer of funds from donors to programmes such as the SUDP was and
is imperilled by the desire to see the funds pass through intermediary organisations such
as the Commission of the European Union, UNDP, or the United Nations Trust Fund for
Human Security. Even where the intermediary organisation takes no commission for its
handling of the monies, the imposition of its procedures adds little value to the
attainment of the project’s objectives. Other objectives may be served, but these have
no relevance to the intended beneficiaries of the programme in the field.



                RECOMMENDATIONS FOR FUTURE PROGRAMMES

Formulating an Exit Strategy

The groups that have been formed for the implementation of local infrastructure
improvement projects believe that their continued good fortune lies in courting UN-
Habitat and persuading the organisation that it should provide them with additional
resources for other similar projects. As an approach to urban renewal such a strategy is
clearly unsustainable. At the same time, personnel - particularly the NGO contractors -
working in the area of municipal finance are anxious to find ways of ensuring that the
training that they provide is actually used. Present indications are that considerably



                                            50
more than training will be required to break the cycle of self-interest that dominates
municipal affairs.

For these reasons it is suggested that future grant aid for individual projects, or possibly
for several projects in the same community, be tied to a new form of agreement between
UN-Habitat, each municipality and the relevant community groups. The agreement
should tie the municipality to raising income from property taxes from their present level
to one that would allow the financing of urban improvement on a continuous basis.
Details would have to be worked out, including the amount of community contribution
that is expected (i.e. other than from property taxes) as well as the amount that UN-
Habitat could contributed for (say) the first three years after the municipality reached its
target income. For such a scheme to work it would be essential that the municipal
accounts become transparent and maintained using the double entry methods that have
been taught.

Programme Planning

For the formulation and design any similar future programme it is recommended that
UN-Habitat engage the services of a professional project planner who is able to assist in
the drafting of meaningful outcomes and outputs with their corresponding indicators.
Baselines should be established and output targets agreed. A careful analysis of risk
and assumptions should be made. A budget and other necessary resources should be
assigned for the achievement of each output. The outputs should be tied to an
organizational chart that shows clearly which member of the programme team is
responsible for delivering them. A work plan should be formulated that is negotiated with
all stakeholders, including with all members of the programme team and with relevant
Somali counterparts. Agreements signed with partner organisations as well as
personnel contracts should be tied to the delivery of the defined outcomes and /or
outputs. An independent monitoring agent should be appointed to track and report on
performance, and to advise on the need for contract wavers or extensions according to
evolving operational circumstances.

Selection of Partner Organisations

Although the fashioning of partnerships was one of the defining features of the SUDP,
It is important to note that by attempting to work with a variety of partner organisations
UN-Habitat entangled itself in administrative and operational problems that brought with
them additional delays. In the case of the market vendors of Burao, such delays gave
rise to an additional period of three months or more during which they were displaced
from their – admittedly inadequate – accommodation in order to make room for the
renovation work. 46 For UN-Habitat, with few personnel on the administrative side of the
programme, to be chasing UNDP and – for the Italian Government’s contribution –
chasing the EU for funds that were long since pledged, were experiences that it could
well have done without.

If the modality of fashioning linkages with a variety of partner organisations is to be
pursued, UN-Habitat should be more circumspect in its choice of partners, whether
these be of the UN system or otherwise. A more transparent means of assessing
institutional competence and reducing the associated risks is highly desirable. For

46
     See section of the report on Relationships with Partner Organisation.


                                                  51
reasons of administrative efficiency, in relation to any one programme it would also be
wise to limit the number of partners with which the organisation works.

Before selecting a partner organisation for a new programme, detailed assessments
should be made, preferably by an independent assessor, of the operational strengths
and limitations of both UN-Habitat and the potential partner. The purpose would be to
identify those risk factors that could undermine operational effectiveness, and to suggest
administrative, structural and managerial remedies that might be put in place. Such an
assessment should inform decision-making processes, including planning to simplify and
speed up all administrative actions that may be required to support implementation of
the programme. The conclusions reached should form the basis of a signed inter-
agency memorandum. Inter alia, the agreement should set forth the criteria by with the
performance of the parties shall be monitored, as well as the measures that will become
applicable in the case of default by either party.

Shift from a Coordinating Mindset to a Contracting Mindset

One of the lessons accruing from a management of the SUDP is that a considerable
amount of staff time and energy is taken up in coordinating inputs from a variety of
stakeholders, specifically from the international community. By virtue of the nature of an
umbrella programme this was to be expected. The burden on UN-Habitat was however
greater than might have been expected due to the culture of diplomacy prevailing within
the UN system and its reluctance, therefore, to demand performance of its partners.

The overused word “coordination” disguises the fact that accountability for the use of
public resources is generally only achieved in circumstances where one body – whether
a person or an organisation - carries responsibility for the delivery of the product or
service and suffers negative consequences in the case of poor performance. Neither
UN-Habitat nor its partners presently operate according to such principles. In any future
programme it will be important not only that UN-Habitat retain executive control over the
resources that are made available to it, but that it exercises that control in a businesslike
fashion to demand performance of both its salaried personnel and its contractors. This,
in turn, requires that outputs be carefully specified and that they be re-negotiated with
the relevant parties along the way in response to the circumstances evolving.

Separate Programme Design from Programme Management

Terms of reference require the author to comment on organisational arrangements for a
continuance of SUDP activities with reference to the proposed Joint Programme of UN
Transitional Plan for Somalia, 2008-2009. It is already clear that the extent of
consultations necessary to establish the Joint Programme has drained the SUDP of staff
resources that were engaged for its management. UN-Habitat is possessed of no core
funding, which means that the preparation of any new project or programme has to be
piggy-backed on an existing one. This burden risks damaging the interests of the project
or programme that is already underway. In the case of the SUDP the risk has become a
reality: personnel in the field complain that now at the tail end of the programme there is
insufficient guidance available from international personnel to help them perform
adequately. Thus, the arrangement is counterproductive in that it weakens the project’s
performance and, hence, risks also damaging the agency’s reputation. Hobbling along
and living from hand to mouth is obviously not a responsible way to proceed. For all
future programme planning it is suggested that a special project and programme


                                             52
evaluation /learning and design unit be established that could be funded from an
overhead charge levied on income sources.

Proceed with Caution before Scaling Up

The future UN Joint Programme provides for the incorporation of a much stronger basic
support package to municipalities than was possible under the SUDP. It is hoped that
this will create a better foundation on which to build technical capacity. It is also
expected that the Programme will open the door to developing a broader range of basic
services, to include for example water supply and education. Given the fact that urban
life is still much dependent on the rural linkages, a broader based livelihoods programme
is also envisaged. While all of these objectives are certainly worthwhile, it may be wise
to consider whether the institutional and organisational apparatus is in place, or can be
put in place, to plan and manage such a complex operation.

It is only in recent times that the communities with which the SUDP is now working have
been exposed to the opportunities presented. The municipal governments are still
fragile, and the community groups organised around specific and limited needs. Trying
to move on all fronts simultaneously is likely to overburden this teething democracy and
risks undermining, rather than reinforcing, what has already been achieved. When one
examines the administrative arrangements for supporting such an ambitious programme,
one must also question whether any part of the UN system as presently deployed in
Puntland and the South Central part of the country could possibly be expected to cope.
From an operational point of view Somaliland is possible but, even here, it would be wise
to adopt a phased approach and proceed cautiously.

One of the issues that UN-Habitat must confront when designing a follow on programme
to the SUDP is the range of different issues and activity areas that it will seek to address.
It is known, for example, that the fostering of rural-urban economic linkages is of special
interest. In this area some pilot work has already been done and under the Joint
Programme more is contemplated. 47 The question is: what may be the advantage of
combining work in “X” subject area with work already underway in “Y” subject area or
contemplated in “Z” district? The fact that there is an urban connection is not a reason
for going down that path.

Every additional topic or issue that is addressed will have an opportunity cost, i.e. will
take away resources from addressing some other important issue. As the experience of
the SUDP clearly demonstrates, in a situation where funds are constrained – especially
for the engagement of personnel – many needs cannot be perused or activities followed
up as the organization would like. One umbrella cannot cover everyone, so before
candidate issues are pulled in or thrown out the identification of real synergies is
important. This calls for detailed analysis of the opportunities, constraints, risks and
resources available before committing to any particular course of action.




47
   In March 2008 the Mayor of Boroma stated that he wanted to improve the rural-urban linkages
in his area. In a letter addressed to the UN-Habitat office in Hargeisa, the Mayor solicited help for
organizing a meeting of 63 rural communities. This action may or may not have been connected
with the forthcoming municipal elections but is one that is worth investigating further.


                                                 53
Refocus Capacity Building

For capacity building, in the Somali context it usually does not make sense to bring in
international experts, much less university lecturers, to provide short training courses.
Under the SUDP such personnel arrived unprepared to deal with the limited level of
educational attainment of the target audience, while some found it difficult to adjust to
the operational realities of Somalia. Even if the training course is considered a success
in terms of delivering an output, punctual inputs of this kind tend to remain disconnected
from the need for ongoing action, so that little or no actual work results after the
lecturer’s departure. In other words, where the training input is not keyed into the
ongoing activities it is unlikely to produce a benefit.

Long-term professional training opportunities are required in the range of disciplines that
pertain to urban governance, the provision of urban planning and urban services.
Ideally, the training should be organised in Somalia, but consideration may be given to
providing opportunities also for study abroad, perhaps as a component of a longer-term
programme based in-country. In either case it is important that that training bursaries be
tied to both the trainee’s performance and his or her application of the learning in the
back at home situation.

Although it may be trite to observe, it is only through a concerted and integrated effort on
many fronts that change may to be brought about in urban governance within a
reasonable time frame. Technical training, or awareness raising, or local projects, or
domestic legislation – on their own are unlikely to achieve very much that is sustainable.
Additional measures might include financial sticks and carrots of the kind that can be
provided by aid organizations and embassies.

If UN-Habitat wishes to see benefits emerging from its investment in technical training
then it must be ready to invest further in the social mobilisation that will be necessary to
ensure that the technical components bear fruit. One of the SUDP’s strengths has been
a willingness to recognise the advantage of bringing a variety of stakeholders together
for the common good. A simple extension of this principle, led by NGOs that specialise
in awareness raising and networking, would be a further step in the same general
direction. Interestingly, some of the Somali NGOs through which UN-Habitat has been
working in Puntland and the South Central parts of the country are anxious to move
down this path of engaging in broader social action for the reform of governance. 48

Continuance of Existing Activities

To improve further the efficiency of the municipalities in those areas where it is safe for a
programme to operate, it is recommended that there be an extension of the property
survey and billing system to new towns beyond the initial four. In those towns where a
beginning has already been made there should be a further extension of the work.

Commitments that have already been entered to provide support for specific projects
should be honoured, for example for the completion of the solid waste management
schemes, the completion of other local projects, or the construction of additional
permanent shelter units. A time limit should be imposed for the completion of this work.

48
  In Puntland PIDER and WAWA are two organisations in point. In South Central SAACID seeks
support for a radical community based approach to delivering security.


                                             54
Further training should be provided for elected council representatives on good
governance and on participatory budgeting and financial management. In Somaliland
this would be especially useful after the forthcoming municipal elections.

To increase the chances that the Somaliland Municipal Association renders substantive
benefits to its members, help should be provided to the Association with a process of
needs analysis and strategic planning. To assist with this work, resource persons could
be sought from municipal associations operating in other countries.

In the development of codes and standards for planning and building, next steps should
include (i) the formation of a broad based group of stakeholders to discuss the necessity,
formulation, contents and methods of implementation of planning and building codes; (ii)
the preparation of a strategy for awareness raising of the need for such codes, both
among potential political allies as well as for the general public; (iii) the establishment of
a mechanism for drafting and revising the codes, taking into account accumulating
experience; and (iv) ensuring that the municipal codes drafted are consistent with
national requirements and, so far as possible, consistent across the country. In all of
these tasks UN-Habitat can assist in guiding the municipalities and making available to
them information on international best practice that may be adapted to the Somali
context. 49

Delegation of Authority

For the efficient and speedier functioning of quasi-legal procedures, in any future
programme it would be helpful if the authority for entering into cooperation agreements,
managing tenders, issuing contracts, and authorising payments, were to be delegated to
the programme’s Chief Technical Advisor.

Delegation of decision-making authority to Field Officers-in-Charge, up to an appropriate
financial level, would help to simplify much petty administration. This should include, for
example, the authority to authorise leave requests submitted by subordinates. It would
also be helpful to ensure that O-i-Cs are aware of the budgetary situation of the
programme so that they are able to respond easily and quickly to enquiries coming from
counterparts.

Reporting Formats

Given the several different grant-giving bodies with which the SUDP management had to
deal, and the fact that only one staff member was available – and only part time – to
handle this job, it is acknowledged that reporting suffered. For future programmes it
would be helpful to agree on a standard reporting format that would satisfy the needs of
all donor institutions, and one that is also consistent with UN-Habitat’s own needs.




49
     Activities (ii) and (iii) are already included in a scope of work for the relevant consultant.


                                                     55
                             LIST OF ANNEXES




1. Map of Somalia showing distribution of SUDP components   57


2. UN-Habitat Somalia Project Status, March 2008            58


3. Progress from Local Projects to Urban Planning           59


4. SUDP Publications 2005-2008                              61


5. SUDP Staff Costs 2005-2008                               67


6. Persons Interviewed                                      68




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