As of Spring 2014, Shinzo Abe is the Prime Minister of Japan and head of the government. Emperor Akihito is considered the symbol of the country, but he has no executive powers.
The executive branch of Japan's government is the Cabinet. It is led by the Prime Minister and contains 17 or fewer Ministers of State. The "National Diet," Japan's legislative branch, consists of the House of Representatives, which has 480 members, and the House of Councilors, which has 242 members. The Diet is responsible for making laws and electing the Prime Minister, who must be one of its members. Japan's judiciary system is made up of the Supreme Court and lesser courts. All are appointed by the Cabinet.