Ex-Minister Kawai Submits Resignation as Lawmaker

Politics

Tokyo, March 25 (Jiji Press)--Former Japanese Justice Minister Katsuyuki Kawai on Thursday submitted his resignation from the House of Representatives, the lower chamber of parliament, over a vote-buying scandal related to his wife's 2019 election.

The resignation, expected to be approved at a plenary meeting of the chamber soon, is likely to deal a blow to the administration of Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga, who was close to Kawai.

Kawai issued a statement the same day saying that he is resigning to take the blame for creating profound mistrust in politics, and that he deserves to "die 10,000 times" for betraying people's trust.

The politician, now on trial over the vote-buying case, also said he is ashamed that he was so mean that he believed people's minds could be bought for money.

Kawai, 58, a former member of the ruling Liberal Democratic Party, is alleged to have paid a total of some 29 million yen to 100 people, including local assembly members, between March and August 2019 to seek help in rounding up votes for his wife, Anri, 47.

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press