As part of its mandate to provide capacity building for local officials to improve the delivery of equitable social services, UN-Habitat and its partners provided training to dozens of local officials this month.
The five-day training for 97 mayors and deputy mayors was conducted under the Joint Program on Local Governance and Decentralization (JPLG) in partnership with the Somaliland Ministry of Home Affairs.
The Local Leadership Management (LLM) training was delivered in Hargeisa, Burao and Borama, three separate districts of Somaliland. The goal is to make local governments effective subnational structures that can provide basic social services.
“This training provided a detailed description of the key functions of an elected local councillor. These included policy development, financial management, conflict resolution, community empowerment, and institutional development, to name a few. The training is primarily intended for elected local councilors and key municipal staff,” said Abdirahman Mahmoud, UN-Habitat, JPLG Program Manager.
Somaliland Home Minister Mohamed Kahin Ahmed, who officially opened the training in Hargeisa, urged participants to take advantage of the training and use that experience, knowledge and skills to accelerate better services for the citizens they serve.
“In addition to capacity building, this training provides a platform for sharing experiences by bringing almost all local councilors in Somaliland together in one room,” he said.
Hargeisa Mayor Abdikarim Ahmed Mooge also challenged the participants to be vigilant and learn as the task of municipalities is a new experience for most of the elected councillors, while thanking UN-Habitat and JPLG for continuously equip new officials who take up municipal papers.
“From this training, I learned some of my responsibilities as an elected councilman; coordinate and support the creation of an environment conducive to development and sustained economic growth, said Mr. Mohamed Hirsi Ahmed, councilor of the Buroa local council.
“It is also my job, and that of my colleagues in local elected councils, to plan, provide and improve equitable access to social services and infrastructure,” he added.
The program is executed jointly by UN-Habitat, UNDP, UNICEF, ILO and UNCDF and is funded by Sweden, Norway, Denmark, Switzerland, the Netherlands and the EU.