Oshima Becomes Sole Longest-Serving Japan Lower House Speaker
Tokyo, Dec. 12 (Jiji Press)--House of Representatives Speaker Tadamori Oshima became the longest-serving head of the lower chamber of the Diet, Japan's parliament, on Saturday.
Oshima, from the ruling Liberal Democratic Party, has been in the post for 2,030 days, passing Yohei Kono, who served as Lower House speaker for 2,029 days.
"I must fulfill my duties so that the Diet can fully perform its functions, while making efforts to improve on representative democracy," Oshima, 74, told a press conference on Friday.
Oshima, whose constituency is in Aomori Prefecture, northeastern Japan, has been elected to the Lower House 12 times. He became Lower House speaker in April 2015. Previously, Oshima served in such posts as agriculture, forestry and fisheries minister, and secretary-general and vice president of the LDP.
He called for talks among ruling and opposition parties to address the issue of a debate among party leaders not being held at the Diet since June last year, saying, "If there need to be improvements (in the way that debates are conducted), it should be improved, and such efforts are necessary."
[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]