Tokyo – Japan’s upper house of parliament was completing renovations on Monday to improve accessibility for lawmakers with disabilities set to arrive this week, carving out space for their wheelchairs and building a temporary ramp.
“We’ll do everything we can for them so there’ll be no problems,” upper house spokesman Koji Ono said of the two, who use reclining wheelchairs and will need help in parliament. He put the cost of the renovations at about 700,000 yen ($6,500).
Yasuhiko Funago, a vice president of a company that provides elderly and patient care, has Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS), a progressive neurological disease in which patients gradually lose control of most of their muscles.
The other candidate is Eiko Kimura, who has cerebral palsy. Both of them were running from a small opposition group, the Reiwa Shinsengumi.
A temporary ramp is to be built at the main entrance of the parliament, where lawmakers go up a set of stone steps carpeted in red to make their ceremonial first entry.