Nearly 80% of Japan's ruling LDP lawmakers support Suga as Abe's successor: poll
Nearly 80 percent of 394 lawmakers from Japan's ruling Liberal Democratic Party back Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga in next week's presidential election, a Kyodo News survey showed on Wednesday.
Suga and former Foreign Minister Fumio Kishida as well as former Defense Minister Shigeru Ishiba will contest for the party's top position following Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's sudden announcement of resignation late last month citing ill health.
The winner of the election is almost certain to become the next prime minister owing the LDP's dominance in both chambers of Japan's bicameral parliament. The new prime minister will be named at an extraordinary Diet session to be convened on Sept. 16.
Another survey also conducted by Kyodo News showed that Suga is the most popular choice to be the country's next prime minister, who had the backing of 50.2 percent of those surveyed.
Meanwhile, the nationwide telephone poll found that 30.9 percent of respondents favoured Ishiba, a rare critic of Abe's administration within the party while support for Kishida stood at 8.0 percent.