Emperor Akihito and Empress Michiko visited the tomb of their father, Emperor Hirohito, on the outskirts of Tokyo on Tuesday for an official ceremony to report his abdication on 30 in April.
The visit to his father's mausoleum at the Musashino Imperial Cemetery in Hachioji is among the 11 ceremonies marked for renouncing the throne at 85 years, the first of a Japanese monarch alive in more than two centuries and the last to be celebrated. held on the day of abdication.
The emperor, wearing a morning suit, and the empress, wearing a long dress, offered prayers in the mausoleum during the ritual "Shinetsu no gi".
Crown Prince Naruhito, of 59 years, who will ascend to the throne of the chrysanthemum on 1 of May, will participate in a series of ceremonies and rituals to mark his succession.
As preparations for the imperial succession advanced, the cabinet of Prime Minister Shinzo Abe decided on the same day to appoint the chief aide to Crown Prince Nobutake Odano, 71, as the new great steward from 1 in May.
The current Grand Chamberlain Chikao Kawai, of 66 years, will simultaneously assume a new position created to support the emperor Akihito after its abdication. Odano is a former ambassador to the European Union, while Kawai is a former deputy foreign minister.
In 2016, the emperor indicated his desire to abdicate in a video message, citing his concern that he could not fulfill his official obligations due to his advanced age. The diet enacted legislation the following year to allow for change.