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Japan's Tepco Rebuffs Push to Exit Nuclear Biz

But shareholders urge bosses to 'jump in a reactor'
By Matt Cantor,  Newser Staff
Posted Jun 28, 2011 11:03 AM CDT
Tokyo Electric Power Co. Trumps Move to End Nuclear Venture After Fukushima Dai-Ichi Disaster
Tokyo Electric Power Co., (TEPCO) Chairman Tsunehisa Katsumata, center, Vice President Takashi Fujimoto, second from left, Sakae Muto, second from right, and others bow before a news conference at the company's head office in Tokyo, Japan, Wednesday, March 30, 2011. The president of the utility that...   (AP Photo/Itsuo Inouye)

(Newser) – Despite insults from a huge crowd of fuming shareholders, Tokyo Electric Power Co. voted down a motion to end the company’s stricken nuclear business. At its biggest-ever shareholder meeting, attended by more than 9,000, the firm also managed to appoint 17 board members, the New York Times reports. The current chairman was reappointed despite the company’s pledge of an overhaul. By no means, however, did the meeting go smoothly. “Go jump into a reactor and die!” one man yelled at executives.

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Another attendee told board members they “should all be sacked.” Chairman Tsunehisa Katsumata, meanwhile, offered his humblest apologies. “I apologize from the bottom of my heart for the trouble and fear that we have brought to our shareholders, and to society,” he said. “We will do our utmost to bring the accident to a resolution.” Financial news for the company has lately been dire; compensation claims may reach $136 billion, analysts say. But Japan’s government wants to keep the firm afloat and may allot some $3 billion to support it. (Read more Tepco stories.)

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