Kazuo Todani, Deputy Minister of education, culture, sports, science and technology of Japan, left his post after several corruption scandals erupted in the Ministry.
Recently, two officials of the Ministry of education were arrested on charges of bribery. Futoshi Sano, a former Director General of the science and technology Bureau, was arrested for helping Tokyo medical University obtain a government grant in exchange for a place in the institution for his son, Japantimes reports.
Minister of education, culture, sports, science and technology Yoshimasa Hayashi said at a press conference: “I want to sincerely apologize. We will work to restore trust.”
In January last year, 61-year-old Todani entered the top post after Kihei Maekawa left when it became known about the systematic “Amakudari” – the transitions of retired senior government officials to key positions in institutions they once controlled. This long-term practice has caused a public outcry.
But the Ministry was shocked by further corruption scandals. It was established that Todani was entertained by the former head of consulting firm who became the person involved in criminal case with participation of the official of the Ministry of education – the former Director General of the international Department Kazuaki Kawabata. According to investigators, koji Taniguchi, a former Executive Director of a consulting company, met with Kawabata several times a week after work, they went to lunch, eventually Kawabata received 1.4 million yen, for which the company Taniguchi were allocated certain preferential terms.
The outgoing official, who was fined on the same day for apparently inappropriate relations with Taniguchi, told reporters: “I take my punishment seriously and deeply regret that it causes public distrust.”
Todini Michiasu Takahashi, head of the Bureau of primary and secondary education, and Hiroshi Yoshimoto, head of the Bureau of higher education, were also suspected of having an informal relationship with Taniguchi. We are talking about obeah and pay for a taxi. Takahashi also resigned on Friday.
Sources close to the case said that Taniguchi earned the nickname “Kasumigaseki broker” because he was able to establish close ties with officials and win their favor.
Taking advantage of weak discipline among bureaucrats, Taniguchi created a whole “business model” to entertain government officials in the elite clubs of the Tokyo Ginza district.
Prosecutors searched todani’s office, suspecting that He was present during the victory and dinner at the consulting firm.
By establishing an investigation team, the Ministry approached all staff about whether they had ever accepted money or were passionate about and dined by outside agencies.