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False quake resistance data is a product of excessive competition: JCP lawmaker

The Lower House Land, Infrastructure and Transport Committee on December 7 questioned key players involved in the construction of unsafe buildings using fake quake-resistance data to clear the inspections.

Tomoyuki Watanabe, chief of Atlas Architect Design Office, the whistle- blower, also attended the session.

President Suzuki Takahide of Japan ERI, a state-designated building inspection firm, stated that he regarded the data Watanabe presented were not fabricated but involved simple miscalculations," an explanation that would call his qualification as an inspector into question.

Kokuta Keiji (Japanese Communist Party) pointed out that the crux of the matter is that building inspection firms have been deeply thrown into a competition race. However, Japan ERI's Suzuki evaded his responsibility, saying, "About 120 private sector inspecting bodies in Japan are in a severe race. Tougher inspections will force us to lose our clients."

The JCP and other parties unanimously demanded that Aneha Hidetsugu, the Architect Design Office chief who as a first class registered architect designed many of the controversial buildings, and Uchikawa Takeshi, General Management Consultant (Soken) president who "instructed" Aneha, who both refused to attend the Diet sessions, be summoned to the Diet as witnesses.

The land ministry revoked Aneha's license as a first-class designer.
- Akahata, December 8, 2005

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