Rookie Nitta Wins Toyama Governor Race

Politics

Toyama, Oct. 25 (Jiji Press)--Independent rookie Hachiro Nitta won the gubernatorial election in Toyama Prefecture, central Japan, on Sunday.

The 62-year-old former president of Nihonkai Gas Co., a local gas firm, beat two other candidates, including incumbent Takakazu Ishii, 74, who ran for his fifth term as Toyama governor with the backing of the prefectural groups of the ruling coalition of the Liberal Democratic Party and Komeito, and also of the opposition Democratic Party for the People.

Voter turnout stood at 60.67 pct, up sharply from 35.34 pct in the previous gubernatorial election in the prefecture.

During his election campaign, Nitta pledged to utilize his corporate management expertise in prefectural politics and stressed the need to rebuild Toyama's economy. Although the LDP's prefectural chapter supported Ishii, some LDP prefectural assembly members moved to back Nitta, effectively making the gubernatorial race a split election.

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