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Opposition parties forced to decide how long to haggle over Diet schedule

  • 2016-02-01 15:00:00
  • , Yomiuri
  • Translation

(Yomiuri: January 30, 2016 – p. 4)


 With the resignation of former Economic Revitalization Minister Akira Amari, maneuvering between the ruling and opposition parties is intensifying over Diet deliberations on the budget for fiscal 2016. The opposition camp is opposing the ruling coalition’s proposal to start the deliberations at an early date, noting, “Priority should be given to disclosing the complete details of the influence-peddling scandal involving Amari over deliberations on the budget.” Observers have pointed out the limits to pursuing the Amari scandal due to his sudden resignation. The opposition bloc will be forced to make a difficult decision on how long they should continue to haggle over the Diet schedule.


 Democratic Party of Japan (DPJ) Secretary General Yukio Edano emphasized on Jan. 29 that the DPJ will continue to grill Amari over his political funds scandal, saying, “We will ask Mr. Amari to provide an explanation at the Diet. It goes without saying that he needs to provide an explanation because the scandal arose while he was serving as a cabinet minister.” Members of a team of lawmakers from the DPJ and Japan Innovation Party (JIP) that is investigating the Amari scandal visited Chiba Prefecture, where the construction company that disclosed the scandal is located, and interviewed sources familiar with the matter.


 Assuming that they won’t be able to get very far with the Amari scandal, the opposition camp plans to pursue allegations about other cabinet ministers such as Reconstruction Minister Tsuyoshi Takagi. They also intend to rattle the government and ruling parties over the Diet schedule for deliberations on the budget. The opposition’s aim is to demonstrate the forcible management of Diet affairs by the ruling parties by making them take a vote without the presence of the opposition bloc. (Slightly abridged)

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