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News : International : Organization of American States (OAS) Last Updated: Apr 25, 2017 - 12:32:25 AM

OAS Executive Secretariat With Recent Appointment
By Matt Maura, BIS
Apr 25, 2017 - 12:28:15 AM

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His Excellency Dr. Elliston Rahming, Bahamas Ambassador to the United Nations and Permanent Representative to the Organization of American States (OAS), met with (at right) His Excellency Nestor Mendez, Assistant Secretary-General of the OAS, and (at left) Mr. Adam Namm, Executive Secretary of the Inter-American Drug Abuse Control Commission (CICAD), during Monday's Session at the OAS Building in Washington, D.C. The Bahamas serves as Chair of the 61st CICAD Regular Session. (BIS Photo/Matt Maura)

WASHINGTON, D.C., USA – The Organization of American States (OAS) has fulfilled the wishes of OAS Member States to strengthen the Inter-American Drug Abuse Control Commission (CICAD) Executive Secretariat by appointing Ambassador Adam Namm to the post of Executive Secretary of CICAD.

The appointment was made in December 2016. Ambassador Namm enjoyed a distinguished 30-year career at the U.S. State Department. CICAD was without an Executive Secretary for more than 18 months following the departure of Ambassador Paul Simons in May 2015.

His Excellency Nestor Mendez, Assistant Secretary-General of the OAS, said the appointment is already paying dividends.

“Less than five months into his tenure, Ambassador Namm has already effected positive change in the Executive Secretariat of CICAD and gained my confidence and that of the Secretary-General, as well as his colleagues within CICAD and other parts of the OAS.”

His Excellency Mendez on April 24, 2017 told delegates attending the 61st Regular Session of the Inter-American Drug Abuse Control Commission (CICAD), being held at the OAS General Secretariat Building, 1889 F Street, N.W., April 24 – 26, that the Western Hemisphere is in the vanguard when it comes to viewing drug addiction as a public health issue, along with other “progressive approaches” to the global drug problem.

“The OAS and CICAD, specifically, play a vital role in fostering the exchange of information between Member States as well as building capacity in the countries of our hemisphere so that OAS Member States can continue to be in the vanguard vis-a-vis the drug problem,” he added. The Bahamas serves as Chair of the 61st Session.

Ambassador Namm’s focus as Executive Secretary of the Executive Secretariat will be on strengthening the capacity of Member States to address the drug problem.

“This CICAD meeting will allow me the opportunity to meet with many distinguished Commissioners over the next three days which I look forward to,” Ambassador Namm said.

“I place high importance on ensuring that our projects and programmes contain a public health, human rights, gender and development focus. In this regard, we need to continue working on exploring alternatives to incarceration for drug-related crimes; continue strengthening joint CICAD/PAHO actions in the region; craft strategies to minimize the effects of drug production, trafficking and consumption amongst high-risk, vulnerable populations; and support effective, comprehensive and sustainable alternative development policies that guarantee the basic rights of individuals in rural and urban areas.”

Executive Secretary Namm traveled to Nassau earlier this month for a preparatory meeting ahead of the 61st Regular Session. He applauded The Bahamas for making the trip “interesting and informative.”

“Given that I came aboard at the beginning of December (2016), I unfortunately missed the 60th regular Session of CICAD in Nassau. However, I did have the opportunity to travel to Nassau and very much appreciated the opportunity to meet with the Minister of National Security of The Bahamas, Dr. Bernard Nottage; Permanent Secretary, Mr. Carl Smith; Dr. Chaswell Hanna and Dr. Bridgette Rolle.

“I would like to extend my sincere appreciation to The Bahamas for its wonderful hospitality and for hosting an interesting and informative meeting schedule. Supply reduction initiatives, support for youth at risk and drug treatment challenges were among areas highlighted by the CICAD Chair as meriting particular attention – all forming part of the CICAD agenda items for this 61st Session,” Ambassador Namm said.

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