Sources disclosed on Aug. 29 that House of Representatives member Akira Amari, a member of the ruling Liberal Democratic Party (LDP), will serve on the LDP General Council. Amari has held no LDP or Diet positions since he resigned in January as minister of state for economic and fiscal policy due to an influence-peddling scandal involving him. However, since it was decided not to prosecute him or his two former secretaries over the graft scandal, the LDP apparently has judged that “he has been absolved of the charges.”
The LDP plans to decide on his appointment in a General Council meeting on Aug. 30. Amari will serve as a General Council member representing the South Kanto bloc. “This is the Prime Minister’s intent. He is eager to have him return to an important post as early as possible,” said a senior LDP member. However, the results of investigations of the former secretaries have not been disclosed, so opposition parties intend to pursue the money scandal, saying, “Accountability has not been established.”
The General Council, comprising 25 members, is the LDP’s highest decision-making body, takes charges of preliminary deliberations on budgets and bills that the government will submit to the Diet.