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HOME  > Past issues  > 2018 December 5 - 11  > Abe gov't forcibly enacts controversial bills
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2018 December 5 - 11 [POLITICS]

Abe gov't forcibly enacts controversial bills

December 9, 2018

The Liberal Democratic and Komei parties just before dawn on December 8 steamrollered through bills to revise the Immigration Control Act, adversely revise the Fisheries Act, and approve the Japan-EU Economic Partnership Agreement through the House of Councilors plenary session. Japanese Communist Party and other opposition parties, excluding the Nippon Ishin no Kai, resisted head-on the arrogance of the governing parties. Arguments between the ruling and opposition camps continued all night until just after 4 a.m. on December 8.

JCP Secretariat Head Koike Akira held a press conference after the forcible enactments of these bills and severely criticized the Abe government.

Asked by reporters for comments on the revised immigration law which will accept more foreign workers, Koike answered, "I'm very angry. The government throughout the Diet debates continued to conceal important data on missing foreign trainees from the public's eyes. Opposition lawmakers in relays transcribed all the necessary materials on these foreign workers. The government from beginning to end hid the information that it wanted to keep secret. It didn't even answer the questions from the opposition parties sincerely. That kind of behavior and the subsequent railroading through of the controversial bills are a blow to the integrity of the Diet itself."

Regarding the revised fisheries law which will facilitate large companies' entry into coastal fishing activities, Koike said, "It would be the first legal change in 70 years, but the ruling parties did not allow for sufficient time to discuss it and instead bulldozed the bill through the Diet in an extremely hurried manner. Even the Fisheries Agency chief admitted, 'There are so many points in the bill that need to be explained and discussed more.' The bill's vote was arbitrarily taken because the government could not explain why it wants to revise the law now."

On the other hand, Koike pointed to the cooperation among opposition party representatives to transcribe by hand the interrogation data on runaway foreign trainees as an important achievement as they were able to reveal important information previously kept hidden to the general public. Koike added, "The JCP will further increase collaboration with other opposition parties."

Past related articles:
> 67% of ‘runaway’ foreign trainees paid less than Japan’s minimum wage [December 4, 2018]
> JCP Kasai opposes bill to approve Japan-EU EPA[November 21, 2018]
> Coastal fishermen in forum oppose Abe’s intent to adversely revise Fishery Act [November 6, 2018]
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