Way Maung was out there to welcome a journalist delegation from the People

The New Light of

Friday, 30 March, 2001



effective drug control

Myanmar, once identified with the infamous Golden Triangle has gradually

wrested herself free from the misnomer. The triborder area at which those who do

not wish to see things as they really are have been pointing the accusing finger

have come to grips with the truth still seek to be derisive should gain a new,

proper perspective if they remove their tinted glasses. Drugs are a national

concern, countries touched by the scourge say. 

However, they are an international concern today for the picture of heroin as

public enememy No.1 has receded to the rear, what with the more deadly

amphetamines which know no borders. The countries in this region which had to

suffer the brunt of accusation, are today better equipped not only to combat the

scourge of hard drugs but are more ready, willing and able to make better

coordinated efforts. Take for instance the two-day National Seminar on

Development of Institutional Capacity for Demand Reduction Among High Risk Group

AD/RAS/98/C 75 co-sponsored by Myanmar, China, Vietnam, Laos, Thailand,

Cambodia, signatories of Memorandum of Understanding on cooperation in the fight

against Narcotic Drugs in the sub-region, and the UN Drug Control Programme

which dealt with issues at hand. 

Understandably, multi-sectoral and multi-national approaches to the drug problem

and that of demand reduction must have been dealth with at the seminar. In

addition to the presence of representatives of several ministries which have the

responsibility to combat the menace, the presence of the Representative of the

UNDCP in Yangon Mr Jean-Luc Lamaheu and Planning Manager Mr Marc Morival must

have proved the seminar highly productive. 

It is understood that the Supervisory Body was able to focus attention on

techniques for the project. More important, the seminar was attended by 30

trainees from the Health, Social Welfare and General Administration Departments,

the Myanmar Red Cross and the Myanmar Anti-Narcotics Association, all of whom

should be able to better understand the existing situation and contribute more

toward success of joint efforts in the sub-region. Drugs are the concern of the

international community and there is no point in shifting the blame here and

there when we are aware the solution lies in joint efforts. On her part, the

Union of Myanmar has registered considerable success from crop and job

substitution to development of the border areas and national races. The malaise

is there, and knowing it, we can find the remedy, but it must be tackled with

sure-fire methods involving all concerned.