Signature-gathering campaign collects over 33,722 signatures to hold prefectural referendum

July 18, 2018 Ryukyu Shimpo


On July 17 the Henoko Okinawan Resident Vote Assembly, which aims to enact an ordinance for a prefectural referendum asking whether citizens approve or disapprove of the land reclamation project at Henoko, held a press conference at the Prefectural Office and announced that the number of signatures necessary for the referendum were collected, reaching 33,722 in total.

In order for the Assembly to directly request that the governor enact a prefectural referendum ordinance, it is necessary to gather more than 23,000 signatures, which accounts for one-fiftieth of voters in the prefecture.

Collected signatures exceeded the necessary number by about 10,000.

If the procedures move forward smoothly and the proposal for the referendum is passed by the end of October, the referendum will be implemented between this fall and the end of next April.


The Assembly will carry out signature collection until the 23rd of this month and submit a list of signatures to election board at each municipality within ten days.

After an examination by each board, the Assembly will request that the governor enact the ordinance.

The governor must convene the prefectural assembly within twenty days from the request and submit a draft ordinance and related budget proposal.

As the prefectural assembly’s ruling party supports the referendum, the ordinance is expected to pass.


The governor will submit a draft of the ordinance to the Prefectural Assembly, and decide on a date for the referendum.

Given necessary procedures such as time for municipal assemblies to deliberate on supplementary budgets and make the referendum information known throughout Okinawa, the referendum is likely to be held in December at the earliest, after the gubernatorial election on November 18.


(English translation by T&CT and Megumi Chibana)


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