Democratic Party leader Renho announced Thursday she will step down as the head of the nation's largest opposition force, saying she didn't have the leadership ability to maintain party unity in the wake of its crushing defeat in the Tokyo Metropolitan Assembly election earlier this month.

The DP won only five of the 127-seats up for contention in the July 2 election, which critically damaged Renho's political power base within her own party.

Experts say the defeat also showed voters did not believe the DP was a viable alternative to replace Abe's Liberal Democratic Party. Renho's resignation has thus underlined the identity crisis that the largest opposition force is facing due to deep-rooted distrust among voters.