Japan Cabinet PR Secretary Apologizes over Dinner Scandal


Tokyo, Feb. 25 (Jiji Press)--Makiko Yamada, Japan's cabinet public relations secretary, apologized on Thursday for attending an expensive dinner paid for by senior officials of a broadcasting company, including Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga's eldest son, when she was working for the communications ministry.

"I deeply reflect on the loss of confidence in public servants. I'm very sorry," Yamada said at a meeting of the Budget Committee of the House of Representatives, the lower chamber of the Diet, Japan's parliament, where she was summoned as an unsworn witness.

"I want to improve myself as much as possible while continuing to do my duties," she also said, showing her intention to remain in the current post.

It has been revealed that Yamada was treated to dinner in Tokyo by Suga's eldest son and other Tohokushinsha Film Corp. <2329>-related officials in November 2019, when she was a senior official of the communications ministry. Her portion of the bill, totaling some 74,000 yen, was shouldered by the company.

She has decided to return voluntarily 60 pct of her monthly salary over the issue, although she was not punished by the communications ministry. The amount to be returned will come to 705,000 yen, according to Chief Cabinet Secretary Katsunobu Kato.

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press