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Okinawa Governor hints he’s ready to run for re-election

Date Posted: 2010-03-11

Hirokazu Nakaima has finally begun dropping hints he’s ready to seek another term as Okinawa’s governor, telling the Liberal Democratic Party it’s all up to them.

Nakaima, who won the gubernatorial post in November 2006 with backing of the LDP, has told the LDP’s Okinawa Prefectural Chapter “whether I’ll run in the gubernatorial election is up to the LDP.” The 70-year-old politician has had his hands full since the LDP fell from national power last August, and the Democratic Party of Japan’s candidates swept into power in the Okinawa Prefectural Assembly, as well.

He won the last election with both the LDP and New Komeito support. They were the ruling coalition at the time. The primary election issue was where to relocate Futenma Marine Corps Air Station from Ginowan City; Nakaima basically endorsed the idea of moving to Henoko, although he stipulated changes in runway locations that needed to be made.

Nakaima’s backhanded announcement he’s available for another term is expected to send the DPJ and the Social Democratic Party both scrambling to come up with candidates to challenge him. While the SDP and DPJ are coalition partners on a national level, the two are heavy opposition here in Okinawa’s political circles.


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