Moscow, May 26 (IANS/RIA Novosti) Russia’s ruling United Russia party will Saturday elect Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev as its leader at a party congress here.
In April, Medvedev, who was then head of state, agreed to lead the party. Incumbent President Vladimir Putin presided over the United Russia from 2008-2012.
The 13th congress of the United Russia party in Moscow will bring together 670 delegates and about 1,600 guests. Serbian President-elect Tomislav Nikolic and 30 foreign delegations will attend the event.
The agenda of the congress will include the election of the party’s main organs, including the General Council and the Supreme Council, and the adoption of amendments to the party’s charter.
On the eve of the congress, Medvedev proposed sweeping reforms within the party to make its work more efficient and transparent.
After dominating the political scene through the late 2000s, the United Russia party was faced with slipping popularity ahead of the State Duma elections in December, in which it narrowly clutched a majority.
The vote was marred by widespread fraud allegations, though most of them were not confirmed by the courts.
United Russia, slapped with the popular derogative slogan “the party of crooks and thieves” during the elections, was accused by critics of being ineffective and having no distinct political platform.
Party bosses, including Medvedev, promised after the vote a radical revamp of the party, whose support rating stood at 50 percent in May, according to state-run pollster VTsIOM.