Prince Akishino Wants Daijosai to Take Place at Existing Hall
Tokyo, Dec. 25 (Jiji Press)--Japan's Prince Akishino has proposed to the Imperial Household Agency that the upcoming Daijosai rite, in which the next Emperor prays for the well-being of the people and a good harvest, be held at an existing facility, not at a palace to be built only for the event and dismantled shortly thereafter, an agency official said Tuesday.
As "an opinion that he has advanced for 30 years," the prince said the Shinto rite, to be performed by his elder brother, Crown Prince Naruhito, after succeeding to the throne on May 1, should take place at the Shinkaden hall near the Imperial Palace Sanctuaries, Yasuhiko Nishimura, vice grand steward of the agency, told a press conference.
At a press conference in November to mark his 53rd birthday, Prince Akishino argued against the use of state funds for the religious ceremony, saying that related costs should be covered with funds set aside for personal expenses by the Emperor, Empress and other inner members of the Imperial Family.
For fiscal 2018 through next March, the members are allowed by law to spend up to 324 million yen, according to the agency.
Meanwhile, the upcoming Daijosai event, set for Nov. 14-15, 2019, is estimated to cost 2,719 million yen, including 1,907 million yen to be spent on the one-time palace called Daijokyu. The government has decided to cover the costs with state funds, as it did so for the previous Daijosai rite performed by Emperor Akihito, father of the Crown Prince and Prince Akishino, in 1990.
[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]