The launch of the monument was part of the annual Sheikh Tamim Bin Hamad Al Thani International ‘Anti-Corruption Excellence (ACE Award)’ which was held in Africa for the first time.
The leaders symbolically used hammers to knock down a makeshift wall with the word ‘corruption’ inscribed in different languages.
The wall portrayed the barrier that is corruption and the action to break it was ostensibly a demonstration of the determination of leaders to knock down that barrier.
Kagame thanked Ahmed Al-Bahrani, a renowned sculptor behind the statue, and said it symbolized both the openness and the firm resolve needed to prevail in the fight against corruption.
“We thank you for this iconic work of art, which will have pride of place here in our capital city, and which will also go a long way to keep reminding us and encouraging us to always be present in this fight against corruption,” he noted.
Seven people who demonstrated willingness to fight systemic corruption and champion the message of anti-corruption were awarded.
Hage Geingob, Namibian President said corruption is a case that “all of us need to lift hands and fight against.”
“But to do that, transparency plus accountability spell trust. We, leaders, need to be transparent and accountable so that people can regain trust in us,” he noted, adding that corruption is not an African disease.
“For those who think corruption is African, then who comes to corrupt Africa?” he asked.
Faki, on the other hand, said that corruption is a scourge that can be addressed with good governance.
“Governance is closely linked to corruption. Poor governance is a breeding ground for corruption,” he noted, adding that an African convention on prevention and the fight against corruption was adopted by African countries to respond to that.
The sculpture is a steel figure in the form of a hand with an open palm, which symbolizes transparency, openness and the values that underpin the struggle against corruption.
The 12-meter statue is made up of pivots and connections which are said to underscore the importance of partnerships and collaborations globally to combat graft.
The monument is made of 186 triangular connections representing the signatories to the United Nations Convention against Corruption. It is aimed at encouraging people to have unwavering spirit and resolve in their battle against corruption.
“This iconic work of art, will also go a long way to keep reminding us and encouraging us to always be present in this fight against corruption.” President Kagame remarks during the 4th International Anti-Corruption Excellence Award | Kigali, 09 December 2019 pic.twitter.com/6j98dUOnuI
— Presidency | Rwanda (@UrugwiroVillage) December 9, 2019