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Japanese Prime Minister , Shinzo Abe Resigns Due To Ill Health

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images 2020 08 28T113354.909 Japanese Prime Minister , Shinzo Abe Resigns Due To Ill Health

Japanese PM Shinzo Abe has announced his resignation for health reasons.
He said he did not want his illness to get in the way of decision making, and apologised to the Japanese people for failing to complete his term in office.
He has suffered for many years from ulcerative colitis, an inflammatory bowel disease, but his condition has worsened recently, he said.
Last year, he became Japan’s longest serving prime minister. His current period in office began in 2012.
In 2007 he resigned abruptly from an earlier term as prime minister because of his struggles with ulcerative colitis, a chronic condition that he has lived with since he was a teenager.
Mr Abe has a reputation as a staunch conservative and nationalist, and for stimulating growth with his aggressive economic policy known as “Abenomics”.
He has strengthened Japan’s defences and boosted military spending, but has been unable to revise the constitution’s pacifist Article 9, which bans a standing army for anything other than self-defence.
Stability and scandal
Prime Minister Abe has long suffered from chronic ulcerative colitis. The disease forced him to resign in 2007 – the first time he headed the government.
Now, after weeks of speculation about him being absent from the public eye despite a worrying uptick in Japan’s coronavirus cases, it seems he is resigning yet again due to the same illness.
As the longest-serving Japanese prime minister, he leaves behind a legacy of stability and a strong centralised power base that allowed forceful stimulus policies to revive the economy. He also improved relations with the US by courting President Donald Trump, often on the golf course.
Yet his government was also mired in scandal, including talk of favouritism and wilful destruction of public records. When the pandemic struck, his responses were often criticised as being slow, ineffective, and out of touch.
And perhaps importantly for Mr Abe, his cherished – and highly controversial – wish to revise Japan’s pacifist constitution under his watch, has come to naught, at least for now.
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Why are there concerns?
Two hospital visits in one week sparked questions about whether Mr Abe’s health was deteriorating. He had been due to serve until September 2021.
LDP officials have previously dismissed speculation that he would step down, saying the prime minister’s health was fine.
On Tuesday one of his aides told Reuters that he thought Mr Abe would fulfil his tenure.
Closing ceremony – Maracana – Rio de Janeiro, Brazil – 21/08/2016. Prime Minister of Japan Shinzo Abe is seen on stage.
Akira Amari, head of the LDP’s tax panel, dismissed the suggestion that the prime minister would dissolve parliament’s lower house for a snap general election soon.
“There won’t be a snap election for the time being,” he said.
Still, rumours have persisted about Mr Abe’s growing fatigue as he fields growing scrutiny for his handling of the coronavirus pandemic, at a time when approval ratings for his cabinet have dropped.
What happens if Mr Abe is incapacitated?
Under Japanese law, an acting prime minister would step in temporarily if Mr Abe were unable to perform his role, with no limits on how long they can stay in post.
Deputy Prime Minister Taro Aso, who is also finance minister, is first in line, followed by Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga.
An acting prime minister cannot call a snap election but they lead on other matters such as treaties and budgets until a new party leader and premier is chosen.
What happens if Mr Abe resigns?
A resignation or an announced intention to resign would trigger a vote within Mr Abe’s LDP to replace him as president.
This election would be followed by a parliamentary vote to elect a new prime minister.
The winner would hold the post until the end of Mr Abe’s term in September 2021

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UK Threatens Sanctions Against Violence Sponsors In Edo , Ondo Elections

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images 2020 09 16T165926.597 UK Threatens Sanctions Against Violence Sponsors In Edo , Ondo Elections

The United Kingdom yesterday said it would deploy observers in Edo and Ondo States to monitor the governorship elections, and threatened sanction, including a travel ban to the United Kingdom, against sponsors of violence in the two elections.
The UK said the British High Commissioner to Nigeria, Catriona Laing, had met with the leaders of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) and the main opposition, the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).
The decisions of the UK Government were contained in a statement issued yesterday in Abuja by the High Commission to Nigeria.
The statement said: “As a friend and partner of Nigeria, we are closely following the lead up to the off-cycle governorship elections in Edo and Ondo states scheduled for September 19 and October 10, respectively.
“These elections are important, both as an essential element of effective governance within both states and an indicator of the strength of Nigeria’s democratic institutions.
“Our High Commissioner to Nigeria, Catriona Laing, has held meetings with leaders of the two main political parties, the APC and PDP.
“The discussions focused on the need for the parties’ leaders to prevail on supporters to avoid violence before and after the elections and we welcome the Edo candidates’ signatures of the National Peace Committee and INEC convened a peace accord yesterday.
“We will be deploying observation missions to both the Edo and Ondo elections and supporting civil society led observation.
“The UK takes a strong stand against election-related violence and, just as we did in the general election in 2019, will continue to take action against individuals we identify as being responsible for violence during the elections.
“This could include restrictions on their eligibility to travel to the UK, restrictions on access to UK based assets or prosecution under international law.
“The UK will continue to provide support and engagement as we move towards these elections. We urge INEC, the Police and all other agencies involved to work together to deliver free, fair and credible elections.”

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Yoshihide Suga named Japan’s new prime minister

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images 100 1 Yoshihide Suga named Japan’s new prime minister

Japan ’s parliament on Wednesday elected Yoshihide Suga prime minister , with the former chief cabinet secretary expected to stick closely to policies championed by Shinzo Abe during his record- breaking tenure .
Suga , 71, won an easy victory , taking 314 votes of 462 valid ballots cast in the lower house of parliament , where his ruling Liberal Democratic Party ( LDP ) holds a commanding majority .
He bowed deeply as lawmakers applauded following the announcement , but made no immediate comment .
“ According to the results, our house has decided to name Yoshihide Suga prime minister , ” lower house speaker Tadamori Oshima announced after the votes were counted.
Suga is expected to announce his cabinet later Wednesday, with local media reporting he will retain a number of ministers from Abe ’ s last government .
Suga , who on Monday was elected leader of the LDP , is viewed as a continuity candidate and has said his run was inspired by a desire to pursue Abe ’s policies .
Abe , who resigned earlier Wednesday along with his cabinet , is ending his record run in office with a year left in his mandate .
He was forced out by a recurrence of ulcerative colitis, a bowel disease that has long plagued him .
Suga has spent decades in politics — most recently as chief cabinet secretary , where he was known for pushing government policies through a sometimes intractable bureaucracy.
He has also been the face of the government , doggedly defending its policies as spokesman , including in sometimes testy exchanges with journalists .
– ‘ This is my mission ’ – His upbringing, as the son of a strawberry – farmer father and schoolteacher mother , sets him apart from the many blue – blood political elites in his party and the Japanese political scene .
But while he has championed some measures intended to help rural areas like his hometown in northern Japan ’s Akita , his political views remain something of a mystery .
He is viewed as more pragmatic than ideological , and during his campaign spoke more about the need to break down administrative obstacles — so – called bureaucratic silos — than any grand guiding principles .
He will face a raft of tough challenges, including an economy that was already in recession before the coronavirus pandemic .
Suga has said kickstarting the economy will be a top priority , along with containing the virus — essential if the postponed Tokyo 2020 Olympics are to open as planned in July 2021 .
His recipe for doing that ? More of the same , he says.
“ In order to overcome the crisis and give the Japanese people a sense of relief , we need to succeed in what Prime Minister Abe has been implementing , ” Suga said after being elected LDP leader on Monday .
Suga ’ s cabinet is expected to bring few surprises, with Foreign Minister Toshimitsu Motegi and Finance Minister Taro Aso expected to stay on in their jobs .
Defence Minister Taro Kono is tipped to be replaced by Abe ’s brother Nobuo Kishi , who was adopted by his uncle as a child and carries his surname .
Kono is reportedly set to become minister in charge of administrative reform , a portfolio Suga considers particularly important .
– ‘ All my strength ’ – Just two women are so far reported to be in the cabinet , as Olympic minister and justice minister , down from the three who served in Abe ’s last government .
Analysts say Suga is likely to stick with his predecessor’ s signature Abenomics programme , involving vast government spending, massive monetary easing and the cutting of red tape .
On the diplomatic front , Suga is a relative novice, with little foreign policy experience .
There too , experts say , he is likely to tread the path charted by Abe , prioritising the key relationship with the United States , whoever is president after November ’s election .
Relations with China may prove trickier with a global hardening of opinion against Beijing after the coronavirus and unrest in Hong Kong .
There has been speculation that Suga could call a snap election to consolidate his position and avoid being seen as a caretaker prime minister , but he has been circumspect on the prospect .
Abe will stay on as a lawmaker, with some mooting the possibility he could undertake diplomatic missions .
On Wednesday morning as he prepared to resign , Abe said he had given “ all my strength ” and was ending his tenure “ with a sense of pride ” .
“ I owe everything to the Japanese people. ”

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Bill Gates Sr ., Father Of Microsoft Co – Founder Dies At 94

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5f6140c457b7da001ee11de4 Bill Gates Sr ., Father Of Microsoft Co - Founder Dies At 94

Bill Gates Sr., a lawyer and the father of Microsoft’s co-founder, who stepped in when appeals for charity began to overwhelm his billionaire son and started what became the world’s largest philanthropy, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, died on Monday at his beach home on Hood Canal, in the Seattle area. He was 94.
The cause was Alzheimer’s disease, his family said in an announcement on Tuesday.
In 1994, Mr. Gates was 69 and planning to retire from his prestigious law practice in a few years when, one autumn evening, he and his son, Bill, and his daughter-in-law, Melinda, went to a movie. Standing in the ticket line, Bill told his father that he was being inundated with appeals for charity but that he was far too busy running Microsoft to answer them.
His father suggested that he, Bill Sr., could sift through the paperwork and, with his son’s approval, send out some checks. Bill Jr. agreed.
What Mr. Gates Sr. found later were dozens of cardboard boxes filled with requests for money, many with heartbreaking stories of need. A week later, Bill Jr. set aside $100 million to open what was initially called the William H. Gates Foundation. His father, sitting at his kitchen table, wrote the first check: $80,000 for a local cancer program.
Over the next 13 years, while Bill Gates focused primarily on Microsoft, his father managed the foundation day to day, conferring with its executives and philanthropic experts, sending his son lists of proposed grants, writing checks and shaping the charity’s major goals: improving health and education and alleviating poverty in America and the third world.
“I consider Bill Gates Sr. the conscience of the Gates family,” said Pablo Eisenberg, a columnist for The Chronicle of Philanthropy. “He was instrumental in not only starting the foundation but growing it, and his motive was that with all that money, you ought to do good.”
In 2000, Bill Gates and his wife combined three family foundations and donated $5 billion in stock to create a successor charity, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. Mr. Gates, his wife and his father became co-chairs of the new entity, although it was still being managed by Mr. Gates Sr. In many respects, the modern foundation still dates its inception from his first check in 1994.
With Patty Stonesifer, who bridged the old and new foundations as chief executive from 1997 to 2008, Mr. Gates Sr. channeled support for campaigns to eradicate polio, reduce infant and maternal mortality, build schools, foster an agricultural revolution in Africa and invest in technology that created savings accounts for impoverished farm families. Under him, the foundation also gave hundreds of millions to the search for a vaccine to control AIDS, the spectrum of often-fatal conditions caused by H.I.V.
“An enormous part of his contribution was not only the strategic focus and the institutional structure of the foundation, but he helped establish the principles we worked by,” Ms. Stonesifer said of Mr. Gates Sr. in an interview for this obituary in January. “He was a daily reminder that just because you have the checkbook doesn’t mean you have the knowledge or the experience on the issues we are trying to address; that we need to listen to the people who have the experience and the knowledge.”
Bill Gates Jr. credited his father with the early success of the foundation. “I make sure the resources are available, and he works to wisely spend the money,” he told The Seattle Times in 2003.
A prominent Seattle lawyer with heavy civic and professional obligations, Mr. Gates Sr. had largely left to his wife, Mary, the duties of raising their two daughters and one son, Bill, who, all agreed, became insufferably argumentative as a boy — resisting his mother’s requests that he clean up his room, that he stop biting his pencils and that he sit down to dinner on time.
Their test of wills exploded one night at the dinner table, with Bill shouting at his mother in what he described years later to The Wall Street Journal as “utter, total, sarcastic, smart-ass kid rudeness.” In response, his father, in “a rare blast of temper,” The Journal wrote, threw a glass of water in his son’s face.
Young Bill was taken to a therapist, who advised his parents to ease off on discipline. They sent him to Lakeside, a private prep school in Seattle, where he had access to computers. There he met Paul Allen, a student computer whiz.
Years later, the parents acquiesced when Bill quit Harvard and moved to Albuquerque, where he and Mr. Allen founded Microsoft in 1975.
Microsoft grew into the world’s largest personal computer software company. Its 1986 public offering turned its founders into billionaires and 12,000 employees into millionaires. It became one of America’s most valuable publicly traded companies — the third, after Apple and Amazon, to reach the magical trillion-dollar market capitalization.
“I never imagined that the argumentative young boy who grew up in my house, eating my food and using my name, would be my future employer,” Bill Sr. told the Seattle Rotary Club in 2005.
Bill Gates Jr. announced in 2006 that he would give up his daily role with Microsoft over a few years, allowing him more time to work with the foundation.
Weeks later, the financier Warren Buffett pledged to give annual gifts of stock in his company, Berkshire Hathaway, to the Gates Foundation for the rest of his life. Through 2018, his gifts totaled $24.6 billion, sharply raising the Gates endowment and charitable initiatives.
By 2008, when Bill Gates Jr. began working full time at the foundation, his father’s role had begun to diminish after 13 years as the only family member with a daily presence there. For the first time in their lives, father and son were working together. Both were strong-willed executives, but there was no question who was the boss.
“At s6-foot-6, Bill Gates Sr. is nearly a full head taller than his son,” The Journal noted. “He’s known to be more social than the younger Bill Gates, but they share a sharp intellect and a bluntness that can come across to some as curt.” The Journal added, however, “He isn’t prone to introspection, and he plays down his role in his son’s life.”
In a family line of similarly named men, William Henry Gates Sr. was called William Henry Gates Jr. at birth in Bremerton, Wash., on Nov. 30, 1925, the younger of two children of William and Lillian (Rice) Gates. (After his son, Bill — born William Henry Gates III — became famous, the father adopted the suffix “Sr.,” and the son became “Jr.” to simplify things.)
While Bill Sr.’s family was not poor during the Depression, his father, who owned a furniture store, would pick up coal that had fallen off delivery trucks and take it home to heat the house. William attended local schools and was in the Army from 1944 to 1946, rising to first lieutenant in the occupation of Japan. He went to the University of Washington on the G.I. Bill, graduating in 1949, and earning a juris doctor from its law school in 1950.
In 1951 he married Mary Maxwell, a Seattle civic leader and longtime regent of the University of Washington. Besides Bill, they had two children, Kristianne and Libby. Mary Gates died in 1994. In 1996, Mr. Gates married Mimi Gardner, the former director of the Seattle Art Museum.
In addition to his son, Bill, he is survived by his wife; his daughters, Kristianne Blake, who is known as Kristi, and Elizabeth MacPhee, who is known as Libby; and eight grandchildren.
Mr. Gates co-founded what became Preston, Gates & Ellis, a leading Seattle law firm, in 1964, and was a partner until 1998. (The firm is now called K&L Gates.) He was president of the Seattle/King County Bar Association and the Washington State Bar Association and a director of the Greater Seattle Chamber of Commerce, the King County United Way and Planned Parenthood. In 1995, he founded the Technology Alliance to expand jobs in the field. He also served 15 years as a regent of the University of Washington.
But his principal focus after 1994 was the Gates foundation. During his tenure, he directed grants that created children’s vaccines; provided sanitation and clean water to impoverished rural areas in developing countries; distributed bed netting to reduce mosquito-borne malaria; supported the education of girls; and promoted contraceptive use, nutritional supplements and single-use syringes.
In an age of income inequality, Mr. Gates Sr. argued that the purpose of wealth was not to pass it on to loved ones. With Mr. Buffett and the financier George Soros, he opposed a repeal of the federal estate tax in 2001. In 2003 he published “Wealth and Our Commonwealth: Why America Should Tax Accumulated Fortunes” (written with Chuck Collins). And he campaigned unsuccessfully in 2010 for a Washington State income tax on individuals earning $200,000 and couples earning $400,000.
Unlike most philanthropies, the Gates foundation’s bylaws mandate the disposal of all its assets within 20 years of the death of Bill or Melinda Gates, whichever comes later. By 2019, the foundation had given away about $50 billion but still had a $47 billion endowment. Forbes magazine said Bill Gates had $108.8 billion in January 2020, exceeded only by the fortune of the Amazon founder, Jeff Bezos ($115.6 billion) and that of Bernard Arnault, the LVMH luxury goods titan ($117 billion).
In his book “Showing Up for Life: Thoughts on the Gifts of a Lifetime” (2009), Mr. Gates Sr. wrote: “Those who claim that the wealth they have accumulated is theirs to pass on without returning anything back to the American system show a shocking lack of appreciation for all that the system and public monies did to help them create wealth.”

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