The race for the Democratic Party of Japan presidency drew heated debate on the final day of campaigning Sunday as the five candidates took their best shots at convincing their peers why they should be the next prime minister.

The five — former Foreign Minister Seiji Maehara, trade minister Banri Kaieda, Finance Minister Yoshihiko Noda, ex-transport minister Sumio Mabuchi and farm minister Michihiko Kano — are vying for the votes of the DPJ's 398 Diet members.

On Sunday, the five appeared on TV programs and engaged in an open debate to clarify their policies on crucial issues.