Hiranuma in hospital after strokeHow could the family manage to hide this through New Years without collusion from journalists--and not even necessarily friendly journalists? How did folks in Okayama making their New Year rounds knock on the Hiranuma door, get told "Uh, Takeo-san's not in right now" and not ask when he would be in?
OKAYAMA (January 17, 2007) Takeo Hiranuma, a former minister of economy, trade and industry, was hospitalized for a stroke in December, his supporters said Tuesday
Hiranuma, 67, fell ill Dec. 6 while dining with other lawmakers in Tokyo and was diagnosed with a mild stroke, the supporters said at a news conference in his Okayama Prefecture district.
He still has difficulty walking and eating, and will not return to politics before late March at the earliest, they said.
Now we know - a Diet member could expire when the Diet is not in session and no one would be the wiser until the Speaker called the House to order two months later.