Osaka Ishin Eyes Referendum on Metropolis Plan within 4 Years


Osaka, April 8 (Jiji Press)--Osaka Ishin no Kai leader Ichiro Matsui said Monday that the regional party in western Japan will aim to hold a second referendum on its so-called Osaka metropolis plan within the next four years.

"I hope the voters will decide by the time when the (Osaka) mayor's term expires," Matsui told a press conference held after the former Osaka prefectural governor was elected mayor of the city of Osaka on Sunday, when former Osaka Mayor Hirofumi Yoshimura, also a member of the party, won the gubernatorial election.

The simultaneous elections were aimed at reviving the initiative to rebuild the Osaka city and prefectural governments into a single powerful administrative entity like Tokyo.

The regional governments are expected to resume as early as next month talks on the metropolis plan at a joint panel to be joined by members of the municipal and prefectural assemblies elected also on Sunday.

"We don't need to take a forceful approach," Matsui said. "We hope to have substantial discussions, with cooperation from opponents."

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Jiji Press