Opening of the Singapore Anti-Narcotics Association Exhibition at the 62nd Session of the Commision on Narcotic Drugs (CND) in Vienna, Austria - Speech by Mrs Josephine Teo, Minister for Manpower and Second Minister for Home Affairs

Published: 16 March 2019


Ladies and Gentlemen




  1. Thank you for joining me for the opening of this exhibition organised by the Singapore Anti-Narcotics Association, in short, SANA.



  3. Very early on in Singapore’s fight against drug abuse, we knew the Government’s efforts alone will not be enough. That is why SANA was formed in 1972 as an NGO, to provide recovering drug abusers with counselling and aftercare services. The goal was simple: to reduce drug abusers’ risk of returning to their drug habits.


  4. But that is easier said than done. SANA’s persistence has helped to bring the drug problem in Singapore under control. You play a vital role in promoting recovery, that complements the Government’s efforts in prevention, enforcement and rehabilitation.


  5. However, the external environment continues to threaten our efforts. The fight is not over. New dangers are emerging and we cannot let our guard down. SANA’s efforts too must keep up with the times.




  6. One of SANA’s major initiatives involves working with recovering drug abusers to be peer leaders. They help younger drug abusers turn their lives around through peer recovery support groups, and reach out to at-risk groups to convey the anti-drug message. As former abusers themselves, their message carries weight. They obviously know what they are talking about.


  7. In addition, SANA works with community partners. For example, para-counsellors and community befrienders provide counselling and befriending support to SANA’s clients.


  8. SANA’s initiatives are commendable. This exhibition is therefore a useful showcase which we hope will encourage our friends in the international community to persist in the fight against drug abuse.





  9. In conclusion, the drug challenge requires strong community support and effective partnerships with Government. That was true in 1972, and still true today. SANA has been a strong and reliable partner. Together, with the support and commitment of our international partners, we can progress towards a drug-free world.


  10. Thank you.