Japanese Lawmaker with ALS Asks Questions at Upper House

Politics

Tokyo, Nov. 7 (Jiji Press)--Yasuhiko Funago, a Japanese lawmaker with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, or ALS, on Thursday attended a House of Councillors committee meeting and asked questions for the first time since he was elected to the chamber in July.

At the beginning of his appearance before the Upper House education committee, Funago, using a speech synthesizer, said, "As a newcomer, I'll do my best."

The speech was followed by questions made by an aide on behalf of Funago, a member of political party Reiwa Shinsengumi. The questions included whether the government will aim to promote inclusive education in which children with and without disabilities study together.

Funago, while looking back at his life as a person with a disability, said, "Everyone can realize their dreams and goals, like I was able to become a lawmaker, if they try to live strongly."

The committee had made preparations to help Funago attend it, including creating space to accommodate a large wheelchair, allowing him to be accompanied by caregivers and permitting the use of a personal computer.

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press