Remarks by His Excellency Paul Kagame at the Quadriga Award Ceremony, Berlin, 3 October 2009

The Quadriga award is neither the first nor the last for the Honourable Mikhail Gorbachev. His articulation and practice of values that improve humanity - and the impact of these values that led to, among other things, the unification of Germany, are well-known.

The Quadriga award is neither the first nor the last for the Honourable Mikhail Gorbachev.

His articulation and practice of values that improve humanity - and the impact of these values that led to, among other things, the unification of Germany, are well-known.

The many causes the Honourable Gorbachev continues to lead in the realm of politics, economics, and the environmental protection provide further evidence, if any were needed, of his profound humanitarianism.

It was for such efforts that he deservedly earned global recognition in the form of the Nobel Prize - and many others.

Perhaps what is less known is the impact of the Honourable Gorbachev’s thinking on Africa.

Combined with the yearning and struggle for dialogue, reform, democracy, and good governance world-over, the Honourable Gorbachev’s ideas and their impact in Europe, inspired the global community, including Africa to reject bad governments in the late 1980s and early 1990s.

This was a period of extra-ordinary positive change not only for this part of the world - Europe, but our part of the world too - Africa.

There were obviously many actors in this global search for greater openness, transparency, improved governance, and demand for better lives.

But there can be no doubt of the significance of the Honourable Gorbachev’s contribution - who was fittingly recognised for his initiatives as one of the most influential statesman of the 20th Century.

It is therefore my pleasure and distinctive honour to present the Quadriga award to the Honourable Mikhail Gorbachev.

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