Review Panel on Dinner Scandals in Japan Holds 1st Meeting

Politics

Tokyo, March 17 (Jiji Press)--A third-party panel, set up to investigate whether the wining and dining of senior officials from the Japanese communications ministry have affected the ministry's way of operating, met for the first time on Wednesday.

At the Diet, Japan's parliament, the opposition bloc has been grilling the government over the scandals, in which senior ministry officials were wined and dined by executives of Tohokushinsha Film Corp. <2329> and Nippon Telegraph and Telephone Corp. <9432>, saying that they have "distorted government administration."

The independent panel, headed by lawyer Genta Yoshino, is expected to step up its efforts to bring the full facts to light.

Attending the first meeting, communications minister Ryota Takeda called on the panel to "conduct a thorough investigation from the perspective of an outsider."

At a press conference after the meeting, Yoshino said that the panel "will make comprehensive recommendations on how the ministry should operate in order to secure transparency and fairness" in administrative procedures, including those related to licensing.

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press