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Cambodia: Data Training Workshop based on Commune Competitive Plan

Phnom Penh (Cambodia), 26 October 2009 - Held on 21 October 2009 and supported by UNODC, the Data Training Workshop based on the Commune Competitive Plan kick starts the creation of an expanded data gathering system on drug control issues that will over time enhance local capacity for better national and provincial level planning. The Minister of Justice and Vice Chair NACD chaired the inaugural session and the Japanese Ambassador and the UN Resident Coordinator were guests of honor, raising the profile and visibility of the event. All speakers congratulated UNODC for supporting government efforts in ensuring public security and reaching out to drug users as victims of the drug trade who required treatment.

"Cambodia's National Authority for Combating Drugs announced Wednesday a plan to map drug use on a commune-by-commune basis in an effort to meet ASEAN's goal of eliminating drug use in its 10 member nations by 2015. Moek Dara, secretary general of the NACD, said the programme would involve villagers alerting local officials if they witnessed the use, trafficking, sale or manufacture of drugs by their neighbours, in order for officials to help victims of drugs get the care and treatment they need."
Source: Phnom Phen Post

The objective of the Commune Competitive Plan is to make severely drug affected villages, communes and districts, less severely affected and eventually drug-free. For plan implementation and monitoring at the commune level, five foundations have been identified as under:

  1. Illicit crop cultivation and drug productions
  2. Distribution, trafficking, transportation, storing of illicit drugs
  3. Drug abuse
  4. Awareness of the drug law among people and government employees
  5. Effectiveness of law enforcement officials at commune level

There are 1621 communes in Cambodia. Such data, over time, will add value to operational intelligence on the ground and could be linked to Commune database lodged at the Ministry of Planning and supported over several years by UNDP. Communes will be categorized into colors, depending on the severity of their situation.

Importantly, these efforts are a large step in the right direction and underscore the intention of NACD to achieve the goal of a drug free Cambodia.