(Tokyo Shimbun: December 10, 2015 – p. 2)
Dec. 10 marks one year since Okinawa Prefectural Governor Takeshi Onaga took office. He held a press conference on Dec. 9 at the prefectural government office. He reviewed the circumstances leading to the intensification of the confrontation with the national government over the relocation issue of the U.S. military’s Futenma Station from Ginowan City to Henoko in Nago City. Onaga expressed his view by saying, “I have made steady efforts the best I could backed by the passion of the prefectural residents. Although I have been at the mercy of base issues, I chose the right course of action.”
The governor explained that he has started 95% of the pledges including opposition to the Henoko relocation that he had made during the gubernatorial election campaign last November. “It may sound self-serving coming from me,” said Onaga, “but I believe I did my utmost,”self-rating his performance.
The national government filed litigation with a court to invalidate Onaga’s nullification of the landfill permit, as well as request execution by proxy. Onaga commented on the lawsuit by saying, “I will exert all my efforts so that the court will admit the argument of the Okinawa Prefectural Government.”
The Abe administration maintains its hardline stance to move forward with the Henoko relocation. Onaga criticized the government by saying: “The administration is losing its composure and becoming unsettled. It is unable to feel the pain of the prefecture’s residents.” The governor further said: “I want to create a stir from Okinawa so that the Japanese public will think about how democracy should function in Japan. Japan’s reemergence as a democratic country in the true sense will lead to resolving Okinawa’s base issue.”