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SECURITY > Okinawa

Major Okinawan hotel operator to leave “All-Okinawa Council”

  • April 4, 2018
  • , Asahi , p. 4
  • JMH Translation

Okinawan hotel operator Kariyushi Group announced April 3 that it will withdraw from the “All-Okinawa Council,” a support group for Okinawa Governor Takeshi Onaga. Satoshi Toyama, the president of a hotel management company affiliated with the group, held a press conference in Naha City. “The group has been excessively affected by political parties,” he said. “We’d like to work independently toward the reelection of Mr. Onaga.”

 

All-Okinawa Council consists of political parties such as the Japanese Communist Party (JCP) and the Social Democratic Party (SDP), labor unions, and civic groups. The council has been opposing the relocation of the U.S. Marines’ Futenma air base in Ginowan to Henoko in Nago. Though the council has been calling on its members to join forces regardless of conservatism and reformism, the departure of the prominent local company will further add the influence of reformism to the council, putting Onaga in hot water.

 

Toyama also cited the council’s rejection of his proposal on holding a prefectural referendum to clearly demonstrate the Okinawa people’s opposition to the relocation as a reason for resigning from the council.

 

Kariyushi Group is owned by Chokei Taira, who serves as chairman of the Okinawa Convention and Visitors Bureau (OCVB), a general incorporated foundation. Taira is a leading local businessman who supports Onaga. Morimasa Goya, chairman of the Okinawa-based supermarket chain operator Kanehide Group, was also dissatisfied with the fact that the council was excessively affected by reformism. He left the council after resigning as the co-representative of the council in March in the form of taking a responsibility for the defeat of an candidate backed by the council in the Nago mayoral election.

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