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Leader of anti-NHK party to run in by-election, give up Diet seat

Takashi Tachibana, head of NHK Kara Kokumin Wo Mamoru To, speaks to reporters at the Diet on the morning of Oct. 8, 2019. (Mainichi/Masahiro Kawata)

TOKYO -- The head of an opposition party critical of public broadcaster NHK on Oct. 8 announced that he will run in a House of Councillors by-election -- giving up his current seat in the chamber in a move that could boost his party's strength.

Takashi Tachibana, head of NHK Kara Kokumin Wo Mamoru To (the party to protect the people from NHK), told reporters he will run in a by-election for the Saitama electoral district. He will automatically lose his current seat in the upper house, but it will be filled by 42-year-old Satoshi Hamada, a member of his party.

"We will not lose our proportional representation seat," Tachibana explained. He noted that the ruling Liberal Democratic Party and its junior coalition partner Komeito were not fielding candidates in the Oct. 27 by-election, and said it was starting to look to be one that he "can win."

Tachibana, who has called for scrambling NHK's broadcasts, first gained a Diet seat in the upper house election in July.

(Japanese original by Daisuke Nohara, Political News Department)

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