Nippon Ishin approves resignation of party head Matsui

The Yomiuri Shimbun
Nippon Ishin no Kai (Japan Innovation Party) leader Ichiro Matsui speaks at a convention in Osaka City on Saturday.

OSAKA (Jiji Press) — Opposition party Nippon Ishin no Kai (Japan Innovation Party) approved the resignation of party leader Ichiro Matsui at a virtual convention on Saturday.

The party will hold an election on Aug. 27 to choose Matsui’s successor. The resignation of co-founder Matsui is expected to influence the party’s future.

In a speech at the convention, Matsui, also mayor of Osaka City, said that Nippon Ishin “has been gaining strength little by little with support from party members.”

“I want everyone to gather forces to take the party to the next level to implement polices as the force of numbers is what counts in politics,” he said.

Nobuyuki Baba, co-leader of the party, has expressed his eagerness to run in the leadership race. Mizuho Umemura, a member of the House of Councillors is also willing to run.

Nippon Ishin deputy leader and Osaka Gov. Hirofumi Yoshimura has said that he would not run in the race.

A candidate needs to secure the support of at least 30 Nippon Ishin members to run in the leadership race. Some 20,000 party members will vote to pick the new leader.