The aim of this component of the programme was to strengthen municipal governance through regulatory instruments, by-laws, and training. The goal was to enhance urban management capacities for urban communities so that they can maintain a desirable degree of autonomy in decision making and control over local development. This will be done by supporting the political process of reconciliation along the lines of established and recognized federal decentralization of governance and by strengthening instruments for local democratic governance.
The transition from previous projects to the Urban Development Programme for the Somali Region was smooth, due to the fact that all SUDP components were already established (either in pilot or a more advanced form) and incorporated into the two main urban governance and management initiatives implemented between 2003 and 2005. The newly selected councils in Puntland received good governance training. This included Gardo town, the first time UN-HABITAT organized an activity there. The programme had the ambition to respond to the emerging Transitional Federal Government with capacity-building activities, but the south central region regressed into conflict and activities remained small in scale, focusing on Baidoa, where the first district council had been established. However, the deployment of full-scale activities in Puntland was successful and offices were opened in Garowe and Bossaso.