Stop national referendum bill concerning constitutional revision

As the ruling party is bent on submitting bills concerning constitutional revision, more than 150 people assembled in a Dietmembers Office Building on January 23 to develop a movement to check the dangerous move throughout the country.

The Organizing Committee for May 3rd Constitution Day Rally sponsored the assembly, attended by Dietmembers from the Japanese Communist Party and Social Democratic Party.

Sumino Takanori, professor at Senshu University, was the main speaker. He stated that the referendum campaign is aimed at inducing the public to support constitutional revision by stressing that the present Constitution is inappropriate in dealing with human rights and environmental issues. "Their real aim is to eliminate Article 9 from the Constitution," he said.

Some participants said; "Let's take to the streets to collect signatures and organize mass actions to block the submission of the bill to the Diet."

The May 3rd Rally Organizing Committee is composed of eight organizations, including the Liaison Council of 2001 women's year of the Constitution, the Liaison Council of Various Circles for Prevention of Adverse Revision of the Constitution, the Citizens' Network against Constitutional Revision (temporary), and the Christian Peace Network.

Early this year, leaders of the ruling Liberal Democratic and Komei parties and the opposition Democratic Party of Japan began publicly advocating the need to revise the Constitution. The LDP plans to submit two bills to the current Diet session; one for revising the Diet Law in order to propose the constitutional amendment and the other for a national referendum to deal with procedures in the voting. (end)

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