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HOME  > Past issues  > 2017 March 22 - 28  > JCP Koike demands summoning of Abe’s wife as sworn witness in connection with Moritomo scandal
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2017 March 22 - 28 [POLITICS]

JCP Koike demands summoning of Abe’s wife as sworn witness in connection with Moritomo scandal

March 24, 2017
Japanese Communist Party Secretariat Head Koike Akira on March 23 before the press said that in order to uncover more information about a land sale scandal involving the Osaka-based school corporation, Moritomo Gakuen, it is essential to summon Prime Minister Abe’s wife and other key figures as sworn witnesses.

Koike said this in his comment on testimony that Moritomo Gakuen President Kagoike Yasunori gave earlier on this day in the Diet under oath.

At the press conference held in the Diet building, Koike pointed out that Kagoike’s testimony raises serious questions that need to be answered. He went on to say that the role PM Abe’s wife, Akie, played in the cut-price sale of state land to Moritomo Gakuen needs to be clarified.

Koike noted that Kagoike testified that he received from a government official who served as attendant to Akie a fax containing answers to an inquiry that the official made to relevant authorities in regard to the land deal. Regarding this testimony, Koike cited PM Abe’s remark in the Diet in which Abe denied any link between himself and his wife and the matter by expressing his willingness to resign as parliamentarian if any link is found. Koike said, “If the contents of the fax are verified, they will create strong doubts regarding the Abes’ involvement. This is a serious question that needs to be addressed.”

Koike then pointed out that when considering an allegation that certain politicians exercised their influence in the sale of state land, it is important that Kagoike in his testimony provided the names of lawmakers of the Liberal Democratic and Nippon Ishin no Kai parties who were involved.

Furthermore, Koike emphasized the need to investigate the issue of the “powerful influence” that led to the 800 million yen discount off the assessed land value. “This is one of the core questions that must be responded to,” Koike stressed.

Koike said that Kagoike’s testimony emphasizes the need for further investigations and demanded the summoning of PM Abe’s wife, lawyer Sakai Yasuo who engaged in the land deal on behalf of Kagoike, Osaka Governor Matsui Ichiro, and five finance ministry bureaucrats who were involved in the land sale to testify under oath in the Diet. The JCP and three other opposition parties jointly urged the government to summon the five officials early this month.

Past related articles:
> 4 opposition parties jointly demand summoning of witnesses over Moritomo scandal [March 8, 2017]
> Disclose facts regarding sale of state land to private school: JCP Kokuta [February 23, 2017]
> Abe’s wife-associated school corporation gets national land at exceptionally low price [February 11, 2017]
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