Tuesday, August 21, 2007

An offer you cannot refuse

Funny how these investigations come to fruition just just when the party leadership wants Shiozaki Yasuhisa to cease his annoying wangling and vacate his office without any more fuss.

Shiozaki's office staffer embezzled, double-booked 6.3 million yen

TOKYO, Aug. 20 - A staff member at Chief Cabinet Secretary Yasuhisa Shiozaki's parliamentary office has embezzled about 6.3 million yen in political funds and double booked expenses in funding reports in 2005 as a coverup, the lawmaker's office said Monday.

The latest in a spate of money scandals involving Cabinet ministers is another blow to Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, coming less than a month after farm minister Norihiko Akagi was effectively dismissed over scandals including the double-booking of office expenses.

"I myself am very shocked and find it regrettable that something like this has happened," Shiozaki said in a statement. "I will deeply reflect on my responsibilities to manage and supervise, and will make utmost efforts to investigate the situation and prevent a recurrence."

The incident may dampen the hopes of Shiozaki, a close ally of Abe, to take the foreign ministerial post in next week's Cabinet reshuffle...

Place your personal effects in the boxes provided and turn your badge in at the front gate of the Residence by 17:00.

That is all.

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