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Onaga wins third term as Naha City mayor

Date Posted: 2008-11-21

The vote wasnít even close as incumbent Takeshi Onaga rolled to a third consecutive win as Naha Cityís mayor.

Onaga, who carried his experience as a cost-cutting mayor to the voters, scored 70,071 votes, a margin of 15,105 over challenger Chosei Taira. The 58-year-old Onaga had campaigned on his record of cutting payroll and other city expenses, while pressing solutions on issues of garbage and trash. Onaga was backed by the Liberal Democratic and Komeito Parties, as well as independents.

Taira, his 65-year-old opponent, is a former Prefecture Assembly member backed by the Socialist and Communist Parties and the Democratic Party of Japan. Taira said ďPeople didnít know me, and young people especially didnít understand my policy.Ē Political observers say Taira felt the backlash from voters who thought he complained too much about Mayor Onagaís policies without giving workable alternatives, that they didnít think he listened to people, and that he didnít spell out his goals.

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