PHL to raise the bar in fight vs human trafficking as it hosts ASEAN consultative meeting, says Año

File photo of Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG) Secretary Eduardo Año. (Photo grabbed from RTVM/Courtesy RTVM)


(Eagle News) — The Philippine government has set its eyes on raising the bar in the fight against trafficking in persons (TIP) as it hosts the consultative meeting of Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN)-member countries in Panglao, Bohol which starts Tuesday, March 5, 2019.

During the recent security briefing, Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG) Secretary Eduardo Año instructed top government officials involved in the preparation to provide international guests with the best hosting for the ASEAN Cross-Sectoral Consultative Meeting on the Implementation of the Bohol TIP Work Plan 2017-2022.

The Bohol Trafficking In Persons (TIP) Work Plan serves as a guide to all concerned sectoral bodies to implement anti-trafficking activities in the ASEAN region.

This includes prevention of human trafficking, protection of victims, law enforcement and prosecution of crimes of trafficking in persons, and Regional International Cooperation and Coordination.

“Let us raise the bar in our common quest against human trafficking and make sure to provide our international guests with the best hosting for this once in a lifetime event,” Año said.

“Tulong-tulong tayong lahat para maging matagumpay ang ASEAN event na ito. Malaki ang aking paniniwala na matagumpay nating ma-aaddress ang napakalaking problema sa human trafficking lalong-lalo na sa mga kababaihan at mga kabataan,” he said.

About a hundred participants from the various ASEAN Sectoral Bodies are expected to attend the two-day ASEAN meeting in Panglao, Bohol.

“Panglao is a world-renowned tourist destination and Bohol Governor Edgardo M. Chatto is a recipient of numerous awards. I am pretty sure that with all bases covered, this event will be a huge success,” he said.

The two-day ASEAN event will also discuss recent developments in ASEAN, ways forward for establishing a monitoring and reporting mechanism on trafficking in persons, aside from the sharing of good practices to prevent trafficking.
Participants will also discuss future plans and informal networking to strengthen working relationships between and among concerned ASEAN sectoral bodies.

The event is a collective effort of the DILG as SOMTC Philippines Project Implementer, Philippine National Police-PCTC as SOMTC Philippines Secretariat, and The Asia Foundation as Technical and Financial Support.

Top officials from the Office of the Special Envoy to Transnational Crime (OSETC), Women Children Protection Center (WCPC) and Department of Justice (DOJ) are also expected to be part of the Philippine delegation during the said ASEAN meeting.
Año said that the conduct of consultative meeting in Bohol is a purview choice for sharing of good practices in the cross-sectoral implementation of Bohol TIP Work Plan, ASEAN Convention Against Trafficking in Persons Especially Women and Children (ACTIP) and its Associated Plan of Action (APA).