Why Toshihiro Nikai’s 84th Birthday Was a Big Hit With Visitors Bearing Gifts | FRIDAY DIGITAL

Why Toshihiro Nikai’s 84th Birthday Was a Big Hit With Visitors Bearing Gifts

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Former Secretary-General Nikai Nikai celebrated his 84th birthday on March 17. He has been elected 13 times and served as secretary-general for 1,885 days, and his influence as the oldest active secretary-general has not waned… Photo: Reuters/Afro

On February 14, a large quantity of chocolates, confections, and wine were delivered to the LDP’s National Land Stewardship Promotion Headquarters office. The recipient of the gifts on this Valentine’s Day of love was General Manager Toshihiro Nikai.

Mr. Nikai, who sometimes dozes off in the office of the general manager due to his age (laughter), was in a good mood on this day. Since morning, he had received chocolates from female party staffers, secretaries of politicians’ offices, and even from major companies and organizations, and he handed them out to everyone who came by, saying that there were too many to eat. Mr. Nikai probably received the most chocolates in the political world this year,” said a member of the Nikai faction.

Three days later, on February 17, he celebrated his 84th birthday. That day was a Friday. The office of the head of the National Land Stabilization Promotion Headquarters, known as the “Nikai Room,” was said to have been a bigger party than Valentine’s Day. From the morning, the phone calls to congratulate him on his birthday never stopped, and many visitors came to the room with gifts. It was like a “Nikai Festival” at the LDP headquarters that week. A former cabinet member who rushed to the Nikai room that day said excitedly, “I noticed that it was Mr. Nikai’s birthday.

When I realized it was Mr. Nikai’s birthday, I tried calling him on his cell phone but got his voicemail. I found that there were already about 50 people there, including politicians, bureaucrats, business people, developers, major construction companies, and executives from travel and transportation companies. More than 50 There were more than 50 pairs of men in suits waiting in line. There were simple chairs set out in front of the MLIT office, but there were not enough of them. So some people stood still and waited.

Prime Minister Fumio Kishida and party members VIPs The visitors had to wait for each call from Prime Minister Fumio Kishida and other VIPs in the party. On this day, the “Nikai-mode” (pilgrimage to the second floor) had a maximum one-hour wait. Former Prime Minister Suga Yoshihide, former Minister of Labor Toshio Yamaguchi, who retired from politics after the Futashin Gumi incident, and former Speaker of the House of Councillors Akiko Santo also brought gifts.

In any case, the event was extremely “popular,” he said. Why do so many people gather to see the oldest politician, who is expected to retire from politics in the next lower house election? Why has his popularity and power not waned?

The “Nikai Festival at Ginza” was filled with people who were “anti-Kishida…”

Former Prime Minister Suga Yoshihide was the first to visit the Nikai Room to celebrate his birthday. The “Nikai Festival” continued into the evening. The party reached its climax at the wine and wagyu beef restaurant “Tsuru” in Ginza. The party was said to have reached its climax at “Tsuru,” a Japanese beef and wine restaurant in Ginza, where the party was held.

Mr. Suga celebrated Mr. Nikai’s birthday and said, “Nikai -San. The party was a great opportunity to demonstrate to the party and others that the political alliance between Nikai and Kan is strong. 70 ~ (Japanese only) 80 The “Nikkai The 70-80 person “Nikai-Sugan Coalition” will now speak out against the administration. The “Nikkai-Sugan Coalition” of 70 to 80 people will be questioning the administration from now on,” said a former cabinet member.

The “Nikai Room” on the fifth floor of the National Land Stabilization Office is bustling with visitors day after day, while the Mogi Toshimasa Room on the fourth floor is quiet. Toshimasa’s office on the fourth floor is deserted. Even though it is the secretary general’s office Nikai’s office is deserted.

Mr. Nikai ate a slice or two of beef and drank wine as if he was licking his lips. The attendees were drinking a lot, and the topic of conversation was getting deeper and deeper.

Surrounded by Nikai, who at 84 years of age still maintains the greatest centripetal force in the party, the birthday party gradually became an “anti-Kishida rally. As the amount of alcohol was consumed, political-related comments flew about, including the declining approval rating of the administration, the issue of the secretary of state, and the question of whether the Kishida administration’s policy toward China was safe. and “Is the Kishida administration’s policy toward China safe?

Remembering Kishida’s “Nikai ouster

In September 2021, during the presidential election, Kishida declared that he would seek a third consecutive one-year term on the party’s board of directors, and he went for former Secretary-General Nikai’s head. In October, when the Kishida administration took office, he stepped down as secretary-general. Nikai and his close associates have never forgotten this incident.

The Kishida administration has done well so far while managing a difficult administration,” Nikai said. I hope that all of you will support the administration with your strength, and if we make a mistake, let’s make sure that our voices are conveyed to the prime minister.

The cunning former secretary-general Nikai ended the party with these words. As he watched the lively party in front of the assembled guests, he assessed the “future. He was looking at the party and deciding that “now is not the time” for politics.

Defense spending, the declining birthrate, diplomacy with China, the restart of nuclear power plants, and the LGBT-Q issue…these are just a few of the issues that are on the agenda. The Kishida administration will surely be backed into a corner by The Kishida administration will surely be backed into a corner by the Kishida must be getting very impatient in his mind for the May summit in Hiroshima. The Nikkai-Sugan alliance is sure to put Kishida’s administration in a tight spot,” said a participant.

I’ll never forget ‘that thing. Nikai, who is now out of power, is watching the “peril” of the Kishida administration closely and waiting for a chance to win.

  • Interview and text by Shutaro Iwashiro Photo by Shutaro Iwashiro Reuters/Afro

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