LDP OKs resignation of member Yoshikawa after scandal report

Yomiuri Shimbun file photo
Takeru Yoshikawa

TOKYO (Jiji Press) — The ruling Liberal Democratic Party on Friday accepted resignation from the party tendered by Takeru Yoshikawa, a lawmaker of the House of Representatives, the lower chamber of the Diet.

According to the Shukan Post weekly magazine, Yoshikawa, 40, dined with an 18-year-old female university student and made her drink alcoholic beverages at a broiled meat restaurant in Tokyo in May.

Yoshikawa, in his third term as a member of the all-important chamber, also paid her ¥40,000 after the dinner. The student is under drinking age.

By accepting the resignation speedily, the party hopes to put an end to the scandal quickly as the election for the House of Councillors, the upper chamber of the Diet, is approaching in summer.

Speaking to reporters during his visit to Singapore, Prime Minister Fumio Kishida, the LDP’s president, said that the party has accepted Yoshikawa’s departure.

Regarding whether he should resign as a lawmaker, Kishida said Yoshikawa should make a decision as he fulfills his accountability. Yoshikawa is a member of the LDP faction led by Kishida.

At a news conference, Hiroshige Seko, the party’s secretary general at the upper house, said Yoshikawa should decide whether to quit as a lawmaker if he cannot prove that the report is wrong.

The scandal has hit the LDP hard ahead of the upper house election, a former minister said.

A party member said Yoshikawa should resign from the lower house.

Yoshikawa was also criticized by opposition party lawmakers, including Kenta Izumi, president of the Constitutional Democratic Party of Japan.