Rul­ing Ja­pan par­ties win lo­cal gov­ern­ment polls

The China Post - - INTERNATIONAL -

Ja­panese Prime Min­is­ter Shinzo Abe’s rul­ing coali­tion on Sun­day won lo­cal elec­tions seen as a ref­er­en­dum on his ef­forts to boost the econ­omy be­fore up­per house elec­tions next year, news re­ports said.

Can­di­dates backed by Abe’s Lib­eral Demo­cratic Party (LDP) and ju­nior coali­tion part­ner Komeito were elected in all of the 10 gu­ber­na­to­rial polls held on Sun­day across the na­tion, ac­cord­ing to public broad­caster NHK and other re­ports.

Other polls to elect five may­ors as well as lo­cal as­sem­bly mem­bers were also held na­tion­wide in the first set of two rounds of lo­cal elec­tions. The sec­ond set will be held on April 26.

“It was a great achieve­ment,” Toshim­itsu Motegi, chief of the LDP’s elec­tion bureau, told re­porters af­ter exit polls in­di­cat­ing the coali­tion victory were re­leased by lo­cal me­dia. Motegi said the tri­umph was largely due to vot­ers’ high ex­pec­ta­tions of ef­forts made by the rul­ing coali­tion to re­vive lo­cal economies. “The im­pact of Abe­nomics has fi­nally emerged,” LDP sec­re­tary-gen­eral Sadakazu Tani­gaki told vot­ers ear­lier in the north­ern city of Sap­poro. “The theme of th­ese lo­cal elec­tions is to cap­i­tal­ize on the im­pact across the na­tion,” said Tani­gaki.

The vic­to­ri­ous coali­tion-backed can­di­dates in­cluded two pro-nu­clear politi­cians. They won gu­ber­na­to­rial polls in Fukui and Shi­mane in cen­tral and west­ern Ja­pan re­spec­tively, both of which host nu­clear power plants.

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