The Democratic Party of Japan will give Nagano Gov. Yasuo Tanaka and former Vice Finance Minister Eisuke Sakakibara posts in its Cabinet if it wins control of the government in Sunday’s election.
It would be the first time for a serving governor to also be a Cabinet member.
DPJ chief Naoto Kan’s announcement Tuesday of the party’s prototype Cabinet lineup is regarded as a last-ditch attempt to boost public support before the Lower House election.
Kan told a news conference that Tanaka would be appointed as minister in charge of decentralization of administrative power, while Sakakibara would be the finance minister.
Tanaka, an advocate of drastic cuts to public works budgets and a writer who has led citizens’ group movements, is popular among nonpartisan voters — a group expected to have a decisive impact on the election.
Kan said he has chosen the DPJ’s Cabinet members in a bid to decrease the influence of bureaucrats on the policy process, give more administrative power to local governments and eradicate corruption in the government.
“I can say with pride that (the DPJ’s Cabinet lineup) is the strongest team,” Kan said.
At a separate news conference, Chief Cabinet Secretary Yasuo Fukuda tried to play down the impact of the DPJ’s selection of Tanaka.
“I wonder which of the (two) posts he will focus on,” Fukuda said. “I don’t know if he can do both jobs at the same time.”
According to Kan, Ichiro Ozawa, former president of the now-defunct Liberal Party, would be appointed vice prime minister. Kan would serve as prime minister.
Other DPJ Cabinet ministers include Yasuyo Yamazaki, former president of Goldman Sachs Asset Management Co., as land, infrastructure and transport minister.
Yamazaki has drafted part of the DPJ’s key election policy regarding the abolishment of Japan Highway Public Corp. and tolls for the country’s expressways.
DPJ Secretary General Katsuya Okada would be appointed the minister in charge of Diet affairs, while concurrently serving as the party’s No. 2 man.
Meanwhile, former DPJ President Yukio Hatoyama would be appointed minister of education and science, Kan said.
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