4 more DPJ lawmakers leave party
Four more Democratic Party of Japan lawmakers have notified DPJ Secretary-General Azuma Koshiishi that they intend to leave the party in protest at the government’s policies on nuclear power and the planned consumption tax hike.
The four are Hirosato Nakatsugawa, Yasue Funayama, Kuniko Koda and Kuniko Tanioka.
The four said they oppose Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda’s decision to restart two nuclear reactors at the Oi plant in Fukui Prefecture, as well as the plan to hike the consumption tax to 10% by 2015, TV Asahi reported Wednesday.
Nakatsugawa said another reason for his departure was Noda’s handling of the Senkaku issue, and in particular, his lack of action against Japan’s ambassador to China, Uichiro Niwa, who publicly stated his opposition to Tokyo Gov Shintaro Ishihara’s plan to buy the disputed isles.
This brings the number of DPJ defectors to 55 following the mass exodus by former DPJ leader Ichiuro Ozawa and his supporters two weeks ago.