NAGASAKI (Kyodo) Merchants and farmers in Nagasaki Prefecture have banded together to sue the central government to prevent it from opening two floodgates in the Isahaya Bay dike.

The liaison group will soon start preparations for filing the suit by the end of March, leading members said Tuesday.

The plaintiffs are likely to consist mostly of residents and farmers in low-lying areas adjacent to the land drained by the dike project, they said.

Nagasaki Gov. Hodo Nakamura announced in December his prefecture will consider suing the central government to keep the gates closed. He said the plaintiff will probably be a prefecture-run agricultural corporation.

“We want to block the gates being opened by supporting one another so we can protect people’s security and safety,” said Hideo Kuribayashi, the 75-year-old head of the group of merchants and farmers.

A Fukuoka High Court ruling that ordered the two gates to be opened for five years was finalized in December after the administration of Prime Minister Naoto Kan gave up on filing an appeal.

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