The second largest opposition party, the Nippon Ishin no Kai (Japan Restoration Party), decided on Saturday to keep its current leadership, despite the party's poor showing in last Sunday's upper house election.
The party fielded 44 candidates but won only eight seats.
The party held an executive meeting in Tokyo on Saturday afternoon. Afterwards, it said co-leaders Toru Hashimoto and Shintaro Ishihara would stay on, along with Secretary General Ichiro Matsui, Fuji TV reported.
Before the election, Hashimoto had hinted that if the party fared badly in the election, he would step down. After the election, he said that he wanted to concentrate on his duties as Osaka mayor.
Many party members had expressed concern that Hashimoto's remarks about Japan's wartime use of so-called comfort women had a negative impact on the party's chances in the election.
Matsui told reporters that the party will seek to join forces with other smaller opposition parties in order to provide a strong counterbalance to the ruling Liberal Democratic Party.© Japan Today