Abe Admits Higher Spending on Cherry Party Inappropriate

Politics

Tokyo, Jan. 29 (Jiji Press)--Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe admitted Wednesday that the government's higher-than-budgeted spending on an annual cherry blossom-viewing party was inappropriate.

"The bigger gap between the budget and the actual spending was undesirable," Abe told a House of Councillors Budget Committee meeting.

The publicly funded cherry blossom party is caught up in controversy, after it was attended by many supporters of Abe, among celebrity and other guests, in recent years.

At the Upper House committee meeting, Abe rejected a request by Renho of the main opposition Constitutional Democratic Party of Japan to search for party guest lists that the government claims have been destroyed.

Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga said the government "won't conduct a search as it is clear that (the guest lists) no longer exist."

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press