Dr. Rosanelia T. Yangco, OIC Director of the ASEAN Training Center for Preventive Drug Education (ATCPDE), attended the 34th ASEAN Senior Officials on Drug Matters last September 24 to 27, 2013 in Yangon, Myanmar.

Undersecretary Jose Marlowe S. Pedregosa, Executive Director of Dangerous Drugs Board (DDB), led the Philippine delegation which included Assistant Secretary Benjamin P. Reyes of DDB, Assistant Secretary Rene Arnold Orbe, Deputy Director General for Administration of the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA), Ms. Teresita C. Pineda, Chief of the Preventive Education, Training and Information Division of DDB, Ms. Corazon Mamigo, Head of the Statistics Section, Policy Studies, Research and Statistics Division of DDB, Hon. Eva Ponce De Leon, Board member of DDB and Dr. Yangco of ATCPDE.

His Excellency Mr. Nyan Lynn, Deputy Secretary General, Political and Security Cooperation Division, ASEAN Secretariat Office, gave the opening remarks. Police Major General Zaw Win, Chief of Myanmar Police Force, Ministry of Home Affairs, presided over the plenary sessions and addressed certain concerns with the assistance of Ms. Khine Myat Chit, Senior Officer of Security Cooperation Division, ASEAN Secretariat Office.

Country reports of heads of delegations were presented in the morning plenary of September 24. In the afternoon, concurrent working group sessions were held in different venues. Dr. Yangco and Ms. Pineda attended the Preventive Education Working Group chaired by Indonesia. Dr. Yangco presented some of the activities of the ATCPDE and other preventive activities in the Philippines being done by DDB while Ms. Pineda presented the Law which penalizes drivers caught under the influence of drugs. Recommendations of the different working groups were then presented the following day. The other working groups included Treatment and Rehabilitation, Law Enforcement, Research, and Alternative Development.

On September 26, heads of delegations from China, Japan and Korea greeted the ASEAN member states and presented their respective country reports. To express gratitude to the Japan ASEAN Integration Fund (JAIF) that financially assisted the conduct of the ASEAN Seminar-Workshop on Community-Based Prevention of Drug Abuse, Dr. Yangco presented the result of the activity.

ASEAN member states are aiming for a drug free region by 2015 and since 2015 is just two years away, it was decided that an external evaluation of the ASEAN Drug Free goal be done by the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crimes (UNODC).