Lawmakers who quit the Democratic Party of Japan in protest at Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda’s plan to raise the consumption tax intend to launch a new party Wednesday, people close to them said Saturday.
The party to be formed by the nine Lower House members will be headed by Akira Uchiyama of Chiba Prefecture and will be named Kizuna, meaning bonds or solidarity between people, the sources said.
Kizuna was selected in an annual poll in December as the kanji that best summed up 2011, which was dominated by the quake, tsunami and nuclear disasters.
The lawmakers will reportedly register the new party with the Internal Affairs and Communications Ministry on Wednesday.
The sources said they will discuss general principles, basic policies and key posts Tuesday. Koichiro Watanabe, elected from Tokyo via proportional representation, is expected to become secretary general.
The DPJ on Thursday approved Noda’s plan to double the consumption tax to 10 percent by 2015 to help pay for swelling social security costs.