TOKYO: Japanese Prime Minister KISHIDA Fumio, also president of the ruling Liberal Democratic Party, is planning to replace three of the party’s four key executives in a cabinet and LDP leadership team reshuffle on Wednesday, informed sources said Sunday.
The three are LDP General Council chairman Tatsuo Fukuda, Election Strategy Headquarters chief Toshiaki Endo and Policy Research Council head Sanae Takaichi. Secretary-General Toshimitsu Motegi is expected to stay on.
Kishida may appoint a former cabinet minister and member of the largest intraparty faction, which was previously led by slain former Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, to the post of policy research council head, the sources said.
The possible appointment is aimed at ensuring the stability of the Kishida administration by making it clear that the party will be run mainly by its three largest factions, including those led by Kishida and LDP Vice President Taro Aso, according to the sources.
Takaichi was close to Abe, but she does not belong to any faction.
Aso is seen staying in his current post. Kishida is also seen retaining Chief Cabinet Secretary Hirokazu Matsuno, a member of the Abe faction, and Foreign Minister Yoshimasa Hayashi, who belongs to the Kishida faction, from his current cabinet.
Within Komeito, the LDP’s junior coalition partner, there are calls for the post of land, infrastructure, transport and tourism minister to be kept by the incumbent, Tetsuo Saito, a Komeito lawmaker.
Following the personnel shakeup, the Kishida administration will tackle major challenges including reviewing the government’s national security policy and COVID-19 measures and drawing up an additional economic package.
The next head of the LDP Policy Research Council will be in charge of coordination within the party and with Komeito on the issues.