National / Politics

Abe calls for more equal educational opportunities to be part of revised Constitution

JIJI

Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said Tuesday that the better provision of education for all children should be part of reforms to Japan’s Constitution.

“Education must be truly open for all children, regardless of their families’ economic conditions,” Abe said in a message to the meeting of a group of cross-party lawmakers seeking to establish a new constitution.

The prime minister again expressed his eagerness to see the existence of the Self-Defense Forces stipulated clearly in the Constitution’s war-renouncing Article 9.

Abe referred to Crown Prince Naruhito’s accession to the throne, set for May 1, as he urged increased discussions on constitutional amendments.

“It is time for us to have head-on discussions on this country’s future as we stand on the starting line of the new era,” he said.

Former Prime Minister Yasuhiro Nakasone, the head of the lawmaker group, who was absent from the meeting, said in a comment that “we are coming to the end of an era in which (problems) can be covered by interpretations of the existing Constitution.”

“It is time to establish a constitution for the Japanese people, by the hands of the Japanese people,” Nakasone continued.