TOKYO (TR) – The number of voters who actively disapprove of Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda’s leadership rose sharply in December amid questions over turmoil in his ruling DPJ party and the handling of the nation’s nuclear crisis, Agence France-Presse said, citing a poll conducted by the Nikkei business daily.
The survey showed 53 percent of those questioned now disapprove of his leadership, according to AFP. That is a 14 point increase from a month earlier, the news agency said.
Noda, who only became Japan’s prime minister in September, is facing growing criticism over the government’s handling of TEPCO’s nuclear disaster at its Fukushima Daiichi power plant. The Nikkei poll said nearly four fifths of those surveyed questioned Noda’s announcement this month that the damaged nuclear reactors there have reached “cold shutdown,” effectively ending the crisis.
The five Japanese prime ministers prior to Noda were all forced to step down within a year of taking office. The Nikkei phone survey polled 928 respondents and was conducted from Friday to Sunday, according to the AFP.