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HOME  > Past issues  > 2018 March 7 - 13  > Finance Ministry’s falsification of ‘Moritomo’-related documents sparks public outcry
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2018 March 7 - 13 [POLITICS]

Finance Ministry’s falsification of ‘Moritomo’-related documents sparks public outcry

March 13, 2018
Public outcry over the Finance Ministry’s falsification of official documents concerning a state land deal with Moritomo Gakuen has spread across the country.

Holding placards reading, “Don’t make light of the general public!” and “It’s a serious state crime”, protesters on March 12 filled the streets near the Prime Minister’s Office building and chanted, “Finance Minister Aso should resign!”, “All Abe Cabinet members should step down!” and “Take responsibility for the issue!”

Graduate student Suwahara Takeshi said, “This is a big problem affecting the foundation of democracy. It is totally unacceptable.” He mentioned the fact that the Finance Ministry admitted that the ministry had removed from documents that it submitted to the Diet accounts suggesting that Prime Minister Abe Shinzo’s wife, Akie, had been involved in the deal in question. Suwahara noted that Abe in Diet meetings in the past said that if his wife is proven to have had something to do with the sale, he will resign.

Lawmakers of opposition parties took part in the rally. Japanese Communist Party member of the House of Representatives Miyamoto Takeshi gave a speech.

Akahata on the same day interviewed passersby in a shopping street in Tokyo. Many interviewees replied, “It is a matter of course that all Cabinet members should leave office.” A 71-year-old woman said, “Prime Minister Abe did not offer any explanation about the issue. Abe said that he will step down if his wife is found to have played a role in the deal. He should abide by what he said.”

Miki Yukiko, who heads an NPO working to promote disclosure of government information, commented that this is a serious situation in which the credibility of official documents is called into question. She said, “The latest document falsification case may be just the tip of the iceberg. Similar cases may be found in other ministries. It is necessary to keep a closer eye on the government by improving official document archive and information disclosure systems.

Past related articles:
> Taxpayers: Tax agency head who gives false testimony in Diet should be ousted! [February 17, 2018]
> Abe’s wife-associated school corporation gets national land at exceptionally low price [February 11, 2017]
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