Scandal-Hit Sugawara Refuses to Resign as Lawmaker

Politics

Tokyo, Jan. 20 (Jiji Press)--Isshu Sugawara of Japan's Liberal Democratic Party on Monday refused to resign as a lawmaker or leaving the ruling party over an alleged election law violation.

"I apologize for causing trouble," the lawmaker of the House of Representatives, the lower chamber of the Diet, the country's parliament, told reporters. "I'd like to start over from the beginning and do my best."

Sugawara also avoided explaining details of the gift and money scandal reported by the Shukan Bunshun weekly magazine in October last year, which triggered his resignation as industry minister that month.

He said he is ready to cooperate fully with investigators if requested. "I hope to explain the whole picture at the right time," he added.

In September last year, Sugawara took up his first ministerial post.

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press