Japan’s opposition camp demands new probe into Labour Ministry survey scandals

TOKYO (Xinhua) – Japan’s opposition camp yesterday demanded that a new probe be launched into multiple scandals that have rocked the Labour Ministry leading to faulty statistics being gathered for key jobs and wages-related surveys.

Six Diet Affairs Chiefs from the opposition camp, in discussions on the matter yesterday, agreed that a third-party investigative panel that concluded its probe into a scandal at the ministry was lacking in objectivity.

During the probe, some of the questioning of ministry officials into faulty methods used to collect labour-related data were carried out by other officials also connected to the Labour Ministry, it has subsequently been revealed.

It was also revealed that the head of the Labour Ministry’s secretariat and others in the ministry were present in the interviews of former senior ministry officials, adding to what the opposition camp maintains has led to a lack of impartiality in the investigations.

While slamming the government for having not yet fully revealed or accounted for the erroneous data collection methods, the Diet Affairs Chiefs, including the main opposition Constitutional Democratic Party’s Kiyomi Tsujimoto, blasted Labour Minister Takumi Nemoto over the scandals.

Previously, Nemoto’s resignation has been called for by the opposition camp and yesterday, Tsujimoto said the Labour Ministry’s system of data collection had “grown rotten from the roots”.