Tokyo: On September 14, Yoshihide Suga was elected as the new head of Japan’s ruling party, virtually guaranteeing him parliamentary election as the country’s next Prime Minister.

According to reports, Suga received 377 votes in the ruling Liberal Democratic Party election.

The report added that the early vote counting of local representatives on Monday indicated Suga had an overwhelming lead over the two other contenders — former Defense Minister Shigeru Ishiba and former Foreign Minister Fumio Kishida.

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On August 28, Shinzo Abe announced that he would resign due to health problems.

According to reports, the PM announced his plan of resignation at an emergency meeting of the ruling Liberal Democratic Party. The report added that Abe will serve until the next leader is chosen.

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Last year, he became Japan's longest serving Prime Minister. His current period in office began in 2012.

Abe is undergoing treatment for ulcerative colitis, a chronic digestive condition that forced him to step down as premier in 2007