Indecent and Disappointing — Minato City Council is Concerned about two Akasaka Ward Councilors | FRIDAY DIGITAL

Indecent and Disappointing — Minato City Council is Concerned about two Akasaka Ward Councilors

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Daisuke Akasaka (left), who was arrested for the third time, and Mac Akasaka (right), who was finally elected to the Minato City Council after being unsuccessful many times… (from the Minato City Council website)

The Minato City Council is currently plagued by two “Akasaka” candidates.

The first “Akasaka” is Daisuke Akasaka, a Minato City Council member who has been arrested for the third time.

On July 27, the Minato City Council posted the following on its website

We have recommended Daisuke Akasaka’s resignation three times for conduct unbecoming of a councilor, but he has not complied with the recommendation to this day. (We deeply apologize for the serious damage we have caused to the trust of the residents of the ward).

The letter included an unusual apology.

He was arrested on suspicion of violating the Chiba Prefectural Ordinance on Preventing Nuisance, for having spoken obscenities to two junior high school girls in a park.

The first arrest involved the beating of a cab driver; the second was for indecent exposure of the lower half of his body to three high school girls, and he was caught red-handed on suspicion of public indecency.

This is the third time he has been arrested. The Minato City Council has unanimously voted three times to recommend his resignation, but he has not yet resigned. However, he has not resigned and is still walking around with his councilor’s badge. One ward assemblyman in Minato Ward said, “I thought he would do it again.

I thought he would do it again, so I was not surprised that he was arrested for the third time. However, the detention period is too long for an arrest for violation of the Chiba Prefecture Nuisance Prevention Ordinance. Is there something else going on…”

he said.

In 2020, the Minato City Council took countermeasures against Akasaka, who ignored a recommendation to resign and did not even attend the council meetings, by enacting an ordinance concerning special exceptions to council members’ remuneration. Incidentally, the annual salary given to Minato Ward council members is 10,826,183 yen.

Akasaka Ward Councilor, who was obliged to attend the council meetings from January to July 2022, attended 30 days out of the 34 days. However, he was arrested this time.

It is true that he is the type of person who talks passionately about things, and he has a certain number of supporters who find that attractive. That is why, even though he has been arrested three times, he may be thinking of running in the local elections next April.

How will the Minato Ward Assembly deal with the situation in the future? And what will the voters make of it all?

Another “Akasaka” is Minato City Councilor Mac Akasaka, leader of the Smile Party, who was first elected to the Minato City Council in 2019 with 1,144 votes, placing 30th out of 34 candidates.

Mac Akasaka has run for the House of Representatives, the House of Councillors, the Tokyo Metropolitan Governor, the Osaka Prefectural Governor, the Niigata Governor, and the Osaka Mayor. Like Seizo Hashiba Hideyoshi, who passed away in ’15, he is a well-known candidate who loves elections.

In the past 13 elections, he has attracted attention for his radical performances.

In the ’14 Osaka mayoral election, he appeared at a speech by candidate Toru Hashimoto and was strangled by a man in the audience, causing an ambulance to be dispatched. Furthermore, on the day of Hashimoto’s last speech, he appeared dressed as an Indian Buddhist monk with rabbit ears.

Although not an election candidate, he attended the farewell ceremony for film director Nagisa Oshima on January 22, 2013, dressed as Santa Claus. During the burning of incense, he said

Merry Christmas!

and, just before the casket was about to be unveiled, he played music, sang, and danced on the street outside the venue, leading to a situation where the police were called. He was a performer who did whatever he wanted.

However, once he put on his congressman’s badge, he seemed to lose all his energy. Even when he attends a congressional committee meeting, he hardly speaks at all. Another ward assembly member said

I had high expectations for Mac Akasaka’s performance and ability to communicate. I thought he might bring a breath of fresh air to the Minato City Council in a positive sense, but in the past three years, he has only asked questions twice in the council. Seeing his apathy, I wonder what on earth he became a council member for…”

According to the Minato City Council Secretariat, the one-member “Smile Party” is given 2 hours and 20 minutes for questions per year (breakdown: 20 minutes for plenary session, 60 minutes including answers to the Special Budget Committee and 60 minutes including answers to the Special Accounts Committee). Calculated over the past three years, he has had seven hours of question time, but has used only 13 minutes.

Although Councilor Mac Akasaka had campaigned on such campaign promises as “30,000 yen per month for child and elderly allowance,” “activation of smile gift certificates,” and “Smile Day on the 8th of every month,” he has made no statements related to any of these. Speaking of which, in response to the TV personality Junichi Ishida, who withdrew his candidacy for the Tokyo gubernatorial election in 2004, Mr. Mack said, “I saw his press conference.”

“I saw his press conference, and he hasn’t studied at all. I’m running for governor for the fourth time, but I don’t think he knows anything about the Tokyo Metropolitan Government or the Tokyo Metropolitan Assembly.

Ishida-kun hijacked the airwaves for a couple of days and then refused to answer. As one of the bubbly people, I can’t allow that.”

He also criticized the government. However, the aforementioned ward assembly member said, “Councilor Mac Akasaka is a chauffeur.”

“He is dashing to the office in a chauffeur-driven Maybach, but I wonder what he wants to do when he becomes a Diet member. A legislator is the one who speaks out about his own policies over and over again with conviction. Perhaps Councilor Mac Akasaka has neither conviction nor policy. Frankly, it was a disappointment.”

He lamented.

Mac Akasaka has not exercised his right to ask questions, which is the right of a member of the Diet. Recently, he has been absent due to illness, attending only four days this year.

One wonders how the 1,144 voters who cast their ballots for Councilor Mac Akasaka view the “uninteresting Mr. Mac. Where has the sharp-tongued, brash Mr. Mac gone? We hope that he will make a splash in the assembly with his characteristic sharp tongue.”

It is said that the deterioration of local councilors is increasing. I hope that local council members will be aware of the fact that they are elected officials, and that they will remember the expectations of the people who voted for them and the duties of council members.

  • Interview and text by Mitsutoshi Abe (former TV reporter and political journalist)

    Born in 1956. He has appeared in "2 o'clock Honnichi", "Ohayo! Nice Day" and "Tokudane! (both on Fuji Television Network). After managing an advertising agency, he served as a member of the Taito Ward Assembly of Tokyo from 1999 to 2007. After that, he worked as a public secretary for a member of the House of Representatives. Currently, he is reporting and writing about various administrative and social issues from his unique perspective.

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