Remarks by the President of the General Assembly, Mr. Dennis Francis, on the Election of the President of the 79th Session of the General Assembly

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6 June 2024

Your Excellency, President-elect, Philemon Yang,


Distinguished Delegates,

I begin by reiterating my heartfelt congratulations to His Excellency Philemon Yang of Cameroon, on his election as the seventy-ninth President of the General Assembly.

His Excellency Philemon Yang’s remarkable career in public life– spanning national, regional, and international spheres – is testament to a depth of experience and a breadth of vision that are truly exceptional.

As Prime Minister of his country, the Republic of Cameroon, and as Chairperson of the Panel of Eminent Africans of the African Union, as well as in his various roles including involvement at the United Nations, His Excellency Philemon Yang demonstrated unwavering dedication to the principles of peace, sustainable development, and human dignity.

His steadfast leadership has also been characterized by a consistent commitment to dialogue, cooperation, and inclusivity – principles that are absolutely essential for guiding the General Assembly’s work.

As we continue to navigate multiple complex challenges – spanning peace and security to the threats of climate change and sea level rise – the General Assembly remains a preeminent and necessary global forum for forging consensus, crafting solutions, and securing a brighter future.

Your vision for the seventy-ninth session – “Unity in diversity, for the advancement of peace, sustainable development, and human dignity for everyone everywhere” – resonates with profound relevance and urgency.

Indeed, upholding the principles of multilateralism and international cooperation has never been more vital.

We must work together – and much harder – in solidarity and partnership, to address the pressing issues of our time and to ensure that no one is left behind.

With His Excellency Philemon Yang at the helm, I am confident that the General Assembly will rise to the occasion to meet this challenge with courage and compassion.

Excellencies, Distinguished Delegates,

In the months remaining of this session, we must finalise in particular the outcome of the Summit for the Future – a landmark event that holds the promise of transformative change.

I take this opportunity to urge each and every one of you to redouble your efforts, to harness the full potential of our collective strength and wisdom to agree outcome that is action-oriented and ambitious enough to withstand the test of time.

The success of the Summit depends on the active engagement and commitment of all Member States, exhibiting a disposition of flexibility in a genuine effort to find consensus– and I know I can count on your leadership and cooperation to make it a resounding success.

As we embark on this journey together, my office stands ready to provide full support and assistance to His Excellency Philemon Yang and his team – ensuring a seamless transition and a continuity of purpose.

Let us work hand-in-hand, in the spirit of partnership and solidarity – to build a world where peace, sustainable development, and human dignity prevail for everyone, everywhere.

I thank you and wish you a successful tenure ahead.

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