Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe speaks during the 84th congress of Japan's ruling Liberal Democratic Party in Tokyo, Japan, March 5, 2017. Japan's ruling Liberal Democratic Party extended on Sunday the party president's maximum tenure from two consecutive three-year terms to three consecutive terms, paving the way for an extended Abe administration till 2021. (Xinhua/Ma Ping)
TOKYO, March 5 (Xinhua) -- Japan's ruling Liberal Democratic Party extended on Sunday the party president's maximum tenure from two consecutive three-year terms to three consecutive terms, paving the way for an extended Abe administration till 2021.
The party's 84th congress, held at a hotel in Tokyo, approved the change to the party rule on limit to president's tenure, which means that Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, whose current term as the party president expires in Sept. 2018, could stand for re-election next year.
Given Abe's unchallenged position inside the LDP, and assuming, as would almost certainly be the case, the LDP wins the upcoming lower house elections, Abe would possibly remain as party president and thus prime minister till 2021.
In Japan, the leader of the party or party coalition that takes over half of the seats in the lower house would assume the position of prime minister and there is no limit to the prime minister's term.
The LDP party congress on Sunday also passed its 2017 action plan, which laid bare its plan "to speed up discussions on constitutional amendment in the parliament and to show the people the roadmap of changing the constitution."
"The LDP shall lead the specific discussions on putting forth the motion to change the constitution. It is the historical mission of the LDP..." said Abe in a speech here.
The LDP has been advocating constitutional revision as part of its platform since the party was founded in the 1950s. In 2012, the party released its proposed draft constitution, including changing the war-renouncing Article 9.