JAPAN’S SUGA WILL JOIN RACE TO SUCCEED PRIME MINISTER ABE
Japan’s Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga will join the race to succeed his boss Shinzo Abe as prime minister, local media reported on Sunday (Aug 30), as the competition heats up to succeed Japan’s longest-serving leader.
Suga, a longtime lieutenant of Abe’s in a key supporting role, has denied interest in the top job but attracted attention with a series of interviews.
A Suga government would extend the fiscal and monetary stimulus that defined Abe’s nearly eight years in office.
Abe’s announcement on Friday, citing a worsening of a chronic illness, set the stage for a leadership election within his Liberal Democratic Party (LDP).
The LDP president is virtually assured of being prime minister because of the party’s majority in the lower house of parliament.
Suga decided to join the LDP race judging that he should play a leading role given expectations for his ability to manage crises, such as the COVID-19 pandemic and Japan’s deepest postwar economic dive.