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Controversial Ugandan to Be Next UN Assembly Head

Wednesday Jun 11, 2014
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Sam Kutesa
Sam Kutesa  (Source:AP Photo/Martin Cleaver)

The U.N. General Assembly has elected Uganda’s Foreign Minister Sam Kutesa to be its next president amid controversy over his country’s anti-gay laws and allegations that he abused his office and accepted bribes from foreign companies.

The largely ceremonial year-long presidency, which begins in September, rotates by region.

John Ashe, the current president, said at the start of Wednesday’s meeting of the 193-member General Assembly that Kutesa was the unanimous choice of African nations. He then announced Kutsea’s election "by acclamation" as diplomats broke into applause.

Kutesa was ousted as a junior investment minister by Ugandan lawmakers over charges he abused his office. Since 1999, he has been implicated in at least two more scandals including bribery allegations involving foreign companies seeking oil contracts in Uganda.

Kutesa denies all allegations.

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