Monday, June 27, 2011

Japan PM could resign before August: Lawmaker

Japanese Prime Minister Naoto Kan prepares to offer a flower during a ceremony in Itoman, Okinawa Prefecture. -- PHOTO: AP

TOKYO - A SENIOR lawmaker of Japan's ruling party says the prime minister could resign before August.

Katsuya Okada, the No. 2 of the Democratic Party of Japan, told reporters Sunday that if Prime Minister Naoto Kan achieved three policy goals, he could step down before the end of August - the last day of the parliamentary session.

Mr Kan, criticised for his handling of the March tsunami disaster and a nuclear crisis at Japan's Fukushima Dai-ichi power plant, said on June 2 he was willing to resign. But he has not specified when.

Mr Okada said Mr Kan's three goals are the enactment of an extra budget for post-quake reconstruction, the passage of a bill to issue deficit-covering bonds and a vote on a renewable energy bill. -- AP

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