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HOME  > Past issues  > 2009 March 11 - 17  > DPJ leader broke party’s pledge to ban corporate donations
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2009 March 11 - 17 [POLITICS]

DPJ leader broke party’s pledge to ban corporate donations

March 12, 2009
The Democratic Party of Japan at the March 10 Standing Officers Council decided to keep Ozawa Ichiro as its president despite the allegation that he accepted illegal donations from Nishimatsu Construction Co.

Ozawa and other DPJ executives are taking a “so-what attitude” and saying that if he knew that the controversial donations were from Nishimatsu, he would have appropriated them for the party’s branch, claiming that it is okay to receive corporate donations as long as they are made to party branches.

However, the DPJ actually submitted a bill to ban political donations made by public works contractors in 2002, 2004, and 2005. (The 2002 bill was jointly submitted with the Japanese Communist Party).

In its election platforms (“Manifesto”) in 2004 and 2005, the DPJ under the leadership of Okada Katsuya at the time called for a total ban on political contributions by companies receiving public works contracts on the grounds that such donations help to create a hotbed of corruption for cozy relations of mutual advantage among politicians, bureaucrats, and corporations.

On April 1, 2003, it was decided at the DPJ executive board meeting to impose inner-party restrictions on members’ acceptance of political contributions from public works contractors.

Based on the idea that corporate and organizational contributions should be restricted or banned in the future, the decision directed DPJ members to refrain from receiving donations from 63 member companies of the Japan Federation of Construction Contractors. Nishimatsu is one of the member companies cited.

Ozawa’s remarks, expressing the belief that there is no problem in accepting Nishimatsu’s donations, amount to breaking the DPJ’s promise to the people.
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