No politician ordered papers on land deal altered: Ex-official

Protesters shouting slogans and waving placards outside the Diet in Tokyo yesterday. They called for Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and Finance Minister Taro Aso to step down over the land deal scandal.
Protesters shouting slogans and waving placards outside the Diet in Tokyo yesterday. They called for Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and Finance Minister Taro Aso to step down over the land deal scandal.PHOTO: EPA-EFE

Opposition MPs slam reticence of former tax agency chief at hearing

No orders came from any politician for changes to be made to the papers at the heart of a shady land deal to protect Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, a former bureaucrat who resigned over the deepening scandal told Parliament yesterday.

Former tax agency chief Nobuhisa Sagawa, 60, was head of the Finance Ministry's Financial Bureau when public records were doctored to erase the names of Mr Abe and his wife Akie from 14 documents in a sweetheart deal that has become the Prime Minister's worst domestic political headache.

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A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on March 28, 2018, with the headline 'No politician ordered papers on land deal altered: Ex-official'. Print Edition | Subscribe