Slovakia’s president Zuzana Čaputová has been awarded the European Prize for Political Culture in recognition of her fight for a truly European democracy.
“The Slovakian president Zuzana Čaputová epitomises the key issues currently at the centre of attention in Europe: she is committed to the rule of law, civil rights, the protection of minorities, and collaborative migration policy,” said Katarina Barley, vice-president of the European Parliament.
“She is also dedicated to sustainable environmental policies. She opposes corruption and champions transparency in society. Her election as president is a heartening sign for a values-based Europe, and it is an honour for me to deliver this speech for her.”
The Hans Ringier Foundation chose Mrs Čaputová as the new face of hope for Eastern European EU countries.
“Every European democrat should salute Zuzana Čaputová’s determination and courage, as well as the determination and wisdom of the Slovakian citizens in electing her,” commented Frank A. Meyer, president of the Hans Ringier Foundation.
“The stakes are high and the enormous responsibility is bigger than our candidacies and posts: it influences whether people will even believe in democracy and political representatives anymore,” Mrs Čaputová said while recalling the demonstration that took place in the country after the murder of Ján Kuciak and Martina Kušnírová as an example of positive change.
The European Prize for Political Culture, which is endowed with 50,000 euros, is awarded to figures from European politics every year. Previous winners included German president F.W. Steinmeier, Serbian president Boris Tadic, European Commission president Jean-Claude Juncker and European Council president Donald Tusk.