A sculpture dedicated to Former President Glafcos Clerides and his love of sailing was unveiled on Saturday in Limassol, with President Nicos Anastasiades praising the life-long dedication with which he served Cyprus.

Anastasiades praised the statue as honouring the ethos and the philosophy which characterised Clerides’ political career, but also his universal values of freedom, peace and democracy – which he served with passion. Those qualities, Anastasiades said, earned him respect from both his admirers and those in political opposition.

The ceremony in Germasogeia saw the unveiling of statue which is heavily inspired by Clerides’ love of boats and the seas. The former president once owned the 22-metre German-built Kaity ll – named after his daughter who attended Saturday’s unveiling.

Following the death of Clerides in November 2013, and after being lived in and then abandoned for a number of years, the boat was spared the scrap heap after the cabinet last year authorised the deputy tourism minister to examine the feasibility and cost of converting it into a historical exhibit.

In praising Clerides long-spanning political career, Anastasiades praised him as a “fighter for democracy and a visionary of peace”, referring to the former president’s service in the British Royal Air Force during World War II.

At the ceremony, Clerides, who died in November 2013, was further praised for his pivotal role in seeing through Cyprus’ accession to the EU.

But despite dedicating his life to the island, Anastasiades said, Clerides unfortunately was not able to live to see the island freed.

Clerides was the fourth president of Cyprus – ruling from 1993 to 2003. He founded right-wing and current ruling party Disy in 1976.