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HOME  > Past issues  > 2019 October 30 - November 5  > Justice minister resigns over his wife's possible violation of election law
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2019 October 30 - November 5 [POLITICS]

Justice minister resigns over his wife's possible violation of election law

November 1, 2019

Justice Minister Kawai Katsuyuki on October 31 resigned from the Cabinet after the revelation that the campaign office of his wife, who is also a Dietmember, had given her campaign staff daily wages twice as much as the maximum amount set by the Public Offices Election Act. Just recently, Economic Minister Sugawara Isshu resigned over a possible election law violation.

The resignation of the Justice minister caused the postponement of the holding of not only the day's Lower House plenary session and Upper House committee meeting on judicial affairs but also all committee meetings in both chambers.

Four opposition parties, including the Japanese Communist Party, held their secretaries-general meeting in the Diet building and agreed that the resignation of two Cabinet ministers in just six days to be an "extraordinary situation that calls for the resignation of the Cabinet en masse".

The secretaries-general criticized Prime Minister Abe Shinzo for neither explaining to the general public nor taking any responsibility for appointing these figures as his cabinet ministers. The four parties at the meeting agreed to refuse holding talks with ruling parties for the rescheduling of Diet proceedings unless intensive deliberations are promptly carried out with the attendance of PM Abe in both Houses. They also agreed to press the two former ministers to give their response to the allegations before the Diet.

JCP Secretariat Head Koike Akira said, "PM Abe is just repeating the phrase, 'I am responsible for appointing them', but actually he hasn't taken any responsibility at all. He should allow the holding of intensive discussions in both chambers' Budget Committees and should apologize to the public regarding his responsibility in this matter."

Koike noted that both Kawai and Sugawara had stepped down from their posts before the planned Diet plenary session and committee meetings. He said, "This is like 'running away in the face of the enemy'. They should come to the Diet and give an accounting of their actions to the public."

Past related article:
> METI minister just 1 month after taking office resigns over money scandal October 26, 2019]
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