Scandal Probe to Cover Resigned Cabinet PR Secretary: Minister


Tokyo, March 10 (Jiji Press)--A third-party panel’s investigation into a wining and dining scandal involving senior Japanese communications ministry officials will cover ministry approvals signed by former Cabinet Public Relations Secretary Makiko Yamada, communications minister Ryota Takeda said Wednesday.

Yamada recently resigned as PR secretary amid the scandal, citing poor health. She was treated to an expensive dinner by Tohokushinsha Film Corp. <2329> when she worked at the ministry.

The third-party panel including former public prosecutors will investigate whether wining and dining by the satellite broadcast company affected ministry decisions related to the industry.

At a House of Councillors Budget Committee meeting on Wednesday, Takeda stressed the “transparency and objectivity” of the third-party panel. The panel will review the ministry’s past satellite broadcast approval processes, including those while Yamada worked at the ministry,“ the minister said.

Tohokushinsha obtained ministry approval in January 2017 to operate a satellite broadcast channel. At the end of March the same year, however, the foreign ownership of the company stood above 21 pct, despite the broadcast law requiring such shares to be under 20 pct.

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press