Scandal-Hit Japan Cabinet PR Secretary Steps Down


Tokyo, March 1 (Jiji Press)--Makiko Yamada resigned on Monday as Japan's cabinet public relations secretary, apparently to take the blame for a scandal involving Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga's eldest son.

The government approved Yamada's resignation at a round-robin-style cabinet meeting the same day.

Yamada, 60, who is currently hospitalized in Tokyo, has come under fire for attending an expensive dinner paid for by senior officials of a broadcasting company, including the prime minister's eldest son, when she was working for the communications ministry, in violation of an ethics code for national civil servants. The code bans central government officials from being wined and dined by interested parties.

At a meeting of the Budget Committee of the House of Representatives, the lower chamber of the Diet, Japan's parliament, Monday morning, Suga said Yamada got hospitalized on Sunday as doctors said she needs to receive treatment for about two weeks to recover from poor health. Yamada told Deputy Chief Cabinet Secretary Kazuhiro Sugita that she would resign, according to the prime minister.

"I judged that her resignation was inevitable," Suga said.

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Jiji Press