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Japan lawmaker resigns over $10m loan scandal

Published on Apr 8, 2014 2:42 PM
 
This picture taken on April 7, 2014 shows Japan's opposition Your Party leader Yoshimi Watanabe announcing his resignation from the post at his office in Tokyo. A senior Japanese politician has announced he is resigning as his party's leader, despite insisting that he spent an undeclared US$8 million (S$10 million) loan not on politics but on personal items - including an ornamental rake. -- PHOTO: AFP

TOKYO (AFP) - A senior Japanese politician has announced he is resigning as his party's leader, despite insisting that he spent an undeclared US$8 million (S$10 million) loan not on politics but on personal items - including an ornamental rake.

Yoshimi Watanabe, the latest lawmaker to be felled by a cash scandal, said he was stepping down from the helm of the small but influential Your Party to try to contain the fallout from the incident.

Watanabe accepted 800 million yen (S$10 million) from the chairman of a huge cosmetics company. Japanese law requires that all political donations be made public.

Watanabe said earlier the money had been a personal loan that he had spent on "miscellaneous items" including a decorative "kumade" - a bamboo rake believed to confer luck on its holder.

 
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