President of Russia Vladimir Putin: Good afternoon, friends and colleagues.
I would like to welcome all of you, to thank the members of the previous central headquarters for their work and wish all the best to those who have taken over from them.
Your movement is very important for the state exactly because it is a public movement that has been working without red tape on behalf of the people and directly with the people, because you can feel better than government officials what people need here and now, and have the capacity to influence decisions and monitor their implementation.
The Russian Popular Front (ONF) has created a solid expert basis, which helps it work in specific areas. I do not need to say it yet again, but I will say that 11,000 illegal landfill sites have been closed thanks to the ONF’s contribution to environmental protection. You also work in road building by monitoring projects on the ground, not on paper. This is invaluable.
Your work in the upcoming period will be no less or probably even more important. I will speak about this at a meeting with congress participants. The thing is that we are facing large-scale or even formidable goals, and we have allocated unprecedented funds for their achievement. It is very important for the state, society, the nation and me personally as one of those who have initiated these projects that they are implemented as planned, so that we do not misuse the allocations but attain the expected results from these huge investments.
We must find breakthrough solutions in each area that has been designated as a priority. This would be impossible to do without public involvement, without the involvement of public organisations, primarily the Russian Popular Front.
In this connection, I would like to express the hope that we will continue to work with you as actively as before. I must say a few words about the person who has done a great deal for the ONF’s development. This person is Stanislav Govorukhin. Today I have signed an executive order on perpetuating his memory. You will see what we propose to do when you read the document. He was a very talent person and possibly a genius, with a radiant personality and a strong civic position, a true patriot.
This is all I wanted to say in my opening remarks.