The Daily Manila Shimbun


Lower House panel to vote on abdication bill on Thursday

May 31, 2017

Tokyo- The steering committee of the House of Representatives, the lower chamber of the Diet, Japan's parliament, decided at a directors' meeting on Wednesday to vote on government-sponsored special legislation for Emperor Akihito's abdication on Thursday.
After clearing the Committee on Rules and Administration, the abdication bill is expected to obtain approval from the full Lower House in a vote on Friday. It will then be sent to the House of Councillors, the upper chamber.
Thursday's vote at the committee will take place after a hearing with Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga and a question-and-answer session earlier that day.
In order to involve all parliamentary groups in the closing session, the Lower House panel replaced two of its members, from the ruling Liberal Democratic Party, with two opposition lawmakers, one from the Liberal Party and the other from the Social Democratic Party. The move was effective from Tuesday.
Meanwhile, Tokyo police sent papers on a total of 11 senior members of seven right-wing groups to public prosecutors on Wednesday for allegedly assaulting demonstrators opposed to Japan's Imperial Family system last November.
The move comes at a time when police are on high alert, with a similar demonstration planned for Saturday.
The suspects, all men aged between 27 and 50 and from Tokyo or the neighboring prefectures of Saitama, Chiba and Kanagawa, have admitted the charges against them, claiming that they intended to block the rally, police sources said.
They are suspected of assaulting the demonstrators in the Kichijoji district of Musashino, Tokyo, on Nov. 20 and destroying the windshield of a sound truck.
The demonstration was joined by about 110 people. Some 230 right-wing activists and others gathered to block it. (Jiji Press)