Riyadh: King Abdullah Bin Abdul Aziz of Saudi Arabia has won the annual Transparency Award in recognition of his contribution to strengthening the principles of transparency and justice as well as his efforts to fight corruption.

The award was instituted by the Saudi Saafa Best Model Foundation. In a press statement issued on Sunday, the foundation specially noted King Abdullah’s initiative to launch a National Strategy to Combat Corruption and setting up of the Anti-Graft Commission. "Such decisions have produced electrifying impact in realising the goals set by the foundation. The initiative taken by King Abdullah has laid a solid ground to formulate decisions and work out procedures toward realising transparency, fairness, justice and other values,” the statement said.

Spelling out the reasons for naming King Abdullah for the award, the foundation said that these included the monarch’s relentless efforts to combat corruption, and curbing misuse of public wealth, in addition to the introduction of judicial reforms, promoting the culture of national dialogue in his bid to formulate a broad understanding with regard to the duties and rights of the citizens.

Prince Turki Bin Abdullah Bin Abdul Rahman Alu Al Saud, chairman of the board of directors of the foundation, said that the decision to award the prize to King Abdullah was taken after having comprehensive studies and extensive consultations. "The selection committee, comprised of prominent Saudi figures, has taken the decision with full freedom and impartiality,” he said, while noting that the foundation would strive hard to make the initiative of King Abdullah to consolidate principles of transparency and justice in the society a great success.

It is noteworthy that King Abdullah had issued orders in March this year to set up the National Anti-Graft Commission. The commission, which comes under the direct supervision of the king, is headed by Mohammad Bin Abdullah Al Sharif.

In the press statement, the foundation noted that this year’s Transparency Award attains an exceptional significance in view of the great impact for the royal decrees issued by King Abdullah toward fighting corruption and spreading the values of honesty and transparency in the society.