Japan PM adds Cabinet jobs on tsunami, nuke crisis

The moves are seen as an attempt by Kan to strengthen his hand against a growing number of critics.

Tokyo: Japan`s Prime Minister on Monday
created two Cabinet posts to oversee the nuclear crisis and
tsunami reconstruction efforts as he hopes to shore up his
administration against criticism of its handling of the

Prime Minister Naoto Kan named Ryu Matsumoto as
reconstruction minister and made Goshi Hosono his minister in
charge of handling the crisis at the Fukushima Dai-ichi
nuclear plant.

He also gave special advisory positions to two other
senior politicians.

The moves are seen as an attempt by Kan to strengthen
his hand against a growing number of critics who perceive a
lack of leadership following the March 11 disaster.

He has said he would be willing to step down, but only
after significant steps are made toward putting Japan`s
recovery on a solid footing.

He has also set several preconditions, including the
passage of budget bills and a renewable energy measure.

Hosono, who has been director of the government`s
nuclear crisis task force, will also be in charge of power

An electricity shortage is expected in Tokyo because
of the nuclear crisis, and the government has taken several
steps to prevent problems.

Matsumoto, previously Kan`s environment minister, will
be replaced by Justice Minister Satsuki Eda, who will hold a
double portfolio.

Popular Cabinet member Renho will become an advisor,
along with Shizuka Kamei, the leader of a smaller party in

Chief Cabinet Secretary Yukio Edano announced the new
lineup, in which he also serves administrative reform
minister, taking over Renho`s former post.


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