On September 5th, 2023, at 10:33 AM, a momentous occasion unfolded in New York as Ambassador Dennis Francis of Trinidad and Tobago took the Oath of Office as President of the 78th Session of the United Nations General Assembly. This marks an unprecedented moment in history as it’s the first time a national of Trinidad and Tobago has held such a prestigious position, shining a bright light on the nation’s diplomacy and global standing.
Trinidad and Tobago is beaming with pride at the achievement of this outstanding son of their soil. Ambassador Dennis Francis’s ascent to this esteemed role is a testament to his dedication and commitment to global diplomacy.
In his inaugural address, President Dennis Francis expressed deep gratitude and a profound sense of responsibility for taking up this crucial role. He emphasized his commitment to leading with transparency, accountability, and dedication, in accordance with the principles of the United Nations Charter.
President Dennis Francis acknowledged his predecessor, President Csaba Kőrösi, and expressed his intention to build upon their accomplishments. He also extended his heartfelt thanks to the Government of Trinidad and Tobago for entrusting him with this vital representation and the confidence to serve with dignity, independence, and fairness.
Throughout his presidency, Dennis Francis pledges to uphold Trinidad and Tobago’s values of tolerance, inclusion, cooperation, and unwavering respect for human dignity, which the nation has steadfastly defended during its 61 years of UN membership.
He recognized the invaluable contributions of Deputy Secretary-General Amina Mohammed in championing the development agenda, as well as the Secretary-General’s leadership in reforming the United Nations.
President Dennis Francis outlined four priorities for the 78th Session: peace, prosperity, progress, and sustainability. He emphasized the importance of multilateralism, transparency, and accountability in addressing global challenges, including climate conflict, poverty, and geopolitical divides. He welcomed the General Assembly’s veto initiative as a step toward greater transparency and accountability in the UN.
In his quest for progress, President Dennis Francis highlighted the critical importance of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and called for renewed efforts to accelerate their implementation. He emphasized the need to address gender disparities, promote gender equality, and engage marginalized groups.
In closing, President Dennis Francis called for meaningful and transformative outcomes, emphasizing the importance of global cooperation and shared commitments. He expressed his ambition for the General Assembly to address its challenges effectively and inclusively.
This historic moment at the United Nations reflects not only a remarkable achievement for Ambassador Dennis Francis but also a significant step forward for Trinidad and Tobago’s international recognition and diplomacy. #ProudlyTT #UNGA78