NAGOYA – Hideaki Omura won a third term in the Aichi gubernatorial election Sunday, defeating a challenger backed by the Japanese Communist Party.
The 58-year-old incumbent garnered 1,774,763 votes, against 355,311 votes collected by his only contender, Saichi Kurematsu, 62, who is head of the prefecture’s labor union center.
During campaigning, Omura stressed economic achievements during his past eight years as governor and vowed to boost social infrastructure ahead of a maglev train project scheduled to connect Tokyo and Nagoya from 2027.
Omura ran as an independent with the support of the local chapter of the ruling Liberal Democratic Party and the LDP’s coalition partner Komeito, as well as the main opposition Constitutional Democratic Party of Japan.
Kurematsu criticized Omura for pushing major public works projects such as a plan to build another runway at Chubu Centrair International Airport near Nagoya.
He said he would review the projects, but failed to win broad support from voters.
Voter turnout rose to 35.51 percent from 34.93 percent in the last election, which was held in 2015.