Yoshihide Suga picked as its new leader to succeed Shinzo Abe

Japan’s governing party has elected Yoshihide Suga as its new leader to succeed Shinzo Abe.

71-year-old, Yoshihide Suga, serves as chief cabinet secretary in the current administration and was widely expected to win.

Mr Abe had last month announced his resignation due to deteriorating health.

Mr Suga is considered as a close ally of  Mr Abe and likely to continue his predecessor’s policies.

Mr Suga won the vote for the presidency of the conservative Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) by a large margin, taking 377 of a total of 534 votes from lawmakers and regional representatives.

Now that the LDP has chosen its new leader, there will be another vote on Wednesday in parliament, where he is almost certain to be made prime minister because of the LDP’s majority.

Taking over mid-term, Mr Suga is expected to finish the rest of the current period, until elections in September 2021.

Mr Suga will inherit an economy in the worst possible shape since the World War II, she/he will be left to try and ensure next year’s Olympics already delayed for a year by the COVID-19 pandemic will go ahead.