Kansai Electric Gave Special Treatment to Ex-Deputy Mayor

Economy Society

Osaka, Oct. 1 (Jiji Press)--Kansai Electric Power Co. <9503> had deployed personnel to serve as a liaison between the company and an influential late former deputy mayor of a nuclear plant host town at the center of a recently revealed money scandal involving executives of the company, it was learned Tuesday.

Kansai Electric, based in the western Japan city of Osaka, announced on Friday that 20 executives, including President Shigeki Iwane and Chairman Makoto Yagi, received 320 million yen's worth of money and goods in total between 2011 and 2018 from Eiji Moriyama, former deputy mayor of the town of Takahama, Fukui Prefecture, central Japan, who died in March this year. The town hosts Kansai Electric's Takahama nuclear power station.

According to informed sources, Kansai Electric had the liaison position in place at its nuclear business headquarters in Mihama, another Fukui town, home to the firm's Mihama nuclear plant, at least between 2006 and 2010 for contacting Moriyama and responding to his inquiries. Multiple employees took turns to serve in the position. No single person performed the job for a long period, due to personnel relocations within the company, according to the sources.

Kansai Electric is believed to have given such special treatment to Moriyama, who led efforts to bring the Takahama nuclear plant to the town by wielding his strong influence within the local community.

Moriyama lectured at Kansai Electric's training programs several times, and he was known as "sensei," or teacher, or "Mr. M" within the firm. He was "a power broker of Takahama" a Kansai Electric-linked source said.

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press