Minister of Foreign and CARICOM Affairs, Senator the Honorable Dr. Amery Browne is honoured to announce that His Excellency Dennis Francis took the Oath of Office today, 5th September, 2023, as President of the 78th session of the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA). UNGA President Francis will serve in this capacity for one year until the end of the 78th session in September 2024.

Following the Oath of Office at 10:33 a.m. this morning, His Excellency presided over his first Plenary Meeting as President in the afternoon, in which he opened and addressed the 78th session of the United Nations General Assembly, held a Minute of silent prayer/meditation, and appointed the members of the Credentials Committee.

In his opening statement to the General Assembly, President Francis expressed his appreciation to the Government of Trinidad and Tobago for entrusting him with the privilege of representing the diverse and dynamic people of our country at the UN and for reposing its confidence in him to acquit the Office of President with dignity, independence and fairness. He further stated that his Presidency will reflect the values of tolerance, inclusion, cooperation and unwavering respect for human dignity that Trinidad and Tobago has proudly upheld and defended over 61 years of membership in the United Nations.

The national community would recall that His Excellency Dennis Francis, Permanent Representative of Trinidad and Tobago to the United Nations, New York was elected as President of the 78th session of the United Nations General Assembly by acclamation on 1st June, 2023.

Ambassador Francis grew up in Boissiere No. 2 Maraval, where he attended Boissiere R.C. Primary School and Woodbrook Secondary School. He has had a distinguished career spanning approximately forty years in the Diplomatic Service of Trinidad and Tobago that also includes serving as Trinidad and Tobago’s High Commissioner to Jamaica, as well as Permanent Representative to the United Nations, Geneva.

In approximately two weeks, the United Nations Headquarters in New York will welcome Heads of States and Governments as well as other High-Level Officials from the 193 Member States of the United Nations for the annual High-Level Week of the United Nations General Assembly. During the High-Level Week, which commences on 18th September, 2023, President Francis will preside over the many meetings mandated by the General Assembly, including the High-Level General Debate under the theme for the session, “Rebuilding trust and reigniting global solidarity: Accelerating action on the 2030 Agenda and its Sustainable Development Goals towards peace, prosperity, progress and sustainability for all.”

The Ministry of Foreign and CARICOM Affairs, and by extension the Government of Trinidad and Tobago, warmly congratulates His Excellency Dennis Francis and conveys the very best wishes to him during his Presidency of the 78th session of the United Nations General Assembly.

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