- POLITICS & GOVERNMENT
Swift passage seen on bill related to Unification Church solicitations
14:57 JST, December 6, 2022
The Liberal Democratic Party has presented to opposition parties a draft amendment to a bill prohibiting improper solicitations of large donations as a way to have the bill passed during the Diet session ending Saturday.
The bill was proposed in connection to issues related to what is commonly known as the Unification Church.
The pillar of the amendment is that if a corporation or organization fails to fulfill its duty to show consideration not to suppress the free will of individuals when asking for donations, an administrative agency will recommend necessary measures. If the entity fails to comply, the agency can publicize the name of the corporation or organization.
The amendment was presented Monday during a meeting of secretary generals of the LDP, the Constitutional Democratic Party of Japan and Nippon Ishin no Kai (Japan Innovation Party). Ishin is expected to support the bill with the amendment, so the bill is highly likely to be passed during the current Diet session.
Deliberations on the bill the government submitted to the Diet on Dec. 1 began Tuesday during a plenary session of the House of Representatives. The amendment is expected to be reflected in the bill after deliberations by the lower house Special Committee on Consumer Affairs.
The bill makes it a duty for corporations and organizations to show consideration on three points, including not putting individuals in situations where it is difficult to make appropriate judgements by suppressing their free will. The opposition parties, however, had been asking for revisions on the grounds that this would not be effective enough.
The LDP amendment would allow authorities to advise and publicize names of offending entities “causing significant hindrance to the protection of individual rights.” Reports could also be requested on the solicitation situation, if necessary. The amendment also includes the shortening of the review provision to two years from the original three years after the law takes effect.
“This will improve the effectiveness to offer relief to victims,” LDP Secretary General Toshimitsu Motegi said to reporters after the Monday meeting.
Ishin Secretary General Fumitake Fujita said he “appreciates” the amendment, while CDPJ Secretary General Katsuya Okada called for further revisions, saying such solicitations should be clearly banned.
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