Japanese emperor’s post-abdication title announced

TOKYO (AA): Japan’s Emperor Akihito will be addressed as “emperor emeritus” after abdication in April, local media reported.

The 85-year-old Akihito and Empress Michiko will abdicate on April 30.

It will be the first time in 200 years of Japanese history that a living emperor will leave his position while being alive.

Quoting a statement of Imperial Household Agency, Kyodo news agency said the emperor Akihito will be called “emperor emeritus” and empress Michiko “empress emerita” following their abdication.

Akihito will be succeeded by his eldest son Crown Prince Naruhito, 59, on May 1. However, the Japanese titles to be used after the abdication of the emperor and his wife will be “joko” and “jokogo,” respectively.

“Emeritus”, an adjective, is usually used to designate a retired professor, pastor, bishop, pope, director, president, prime minister, rabbi, or other person to express admiration and respect for the accumulation of experiences and achievements.

The report said that after the crown prince ascends the Chrysanthemum Throne, his younger brother Prince Fumihito, 53, will be first in line to the throne and called “koshi” in Japanese and crown prince in English.

In Japan, the emperor is the symbol of the state and of the unity of the people, while sovereign power rests with the people who elect their representatives to run the government.