Veteran LDP Lawmaker Takeshita Set to Retire

Politics

Tokyo, July 8 (Jiji Press)--Veteran Japanese lawmaker Wataru Takeshita, a member of the ruling Liberal Democratic Party, on Thursday signaled his intention to retire from politics without running in the next election for the House of Representatives, the lower chamber of the Diet, Japan's, parliament.

The 74-year-old LDP bigwig, known to be a smoker, announced in January 2019 that he had been diagnosed with esophagus cancer and took leave. He resumed political activities in November the same year while continuing medical treatment.

In a statement on Thursday, Takeshita, who heads his own LDP faction, said, "I'm unable to work for the people with confidence because of the illness, which has deprived me of my physical and mental strength." The statement was announced by Taimei Yamaguchi, the LDP's election strategy chief and secretary-general of the Takeshita faction, at a press conference.

Takeshita made his political debut in 2000, when he was elected to the Lower House for the first time. He ran in the poll from the No. 2 constituency in the western prefecture of Shimane as the successor to the late former Prime Minister Noboru Takeshita, his older half brother.

Wataru Takeshita has been elected to the Lower House seven times. He has served in such posts as reconstruction minister, chairman of the Lower House Budget Committee, Diet affairs chief of the LDP and chairman of the party's General Council.

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press