TOKYO (Reuters) – In a blow to Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, Japan’s new trade and industry minister will resign as soon as Sunday over allegations that groups backing her misused political funds, Japanese media said.
Yuko Obuchi, the 40-year-old daughter of a former prime minister, plans to report on her investigation of the questionable funding on Monday and then submit her resignation to Abe, the Nikkei and Sankei newspapers said on Sunday.
But the Sankei said Abe’s team was considering having Obuchi make her report to the prime minister on Sunday, not waiting for a parliamentary committee meeting on Monday.
“I feel that ignorance is no excuse,” Obuchi said on Friday. On Saturday, she avoided saying if she would quit, telling reporters her first priority was to investigate the issue.
The Nikkei and Kyodo News reported that Obuchi had told people close to Abe she planned to resign to take responsibility for the furore. Jiji news wire said her resignation was inevitable.