The “suspicion” between the two is now spreading like wildfire. In June of this year, it was reported that Senator Akiko Ikuina and Kōichi Hagiuda, then Minister of Economy, Trade, and Industry, had visited facilities affiliated with the Family Federation for World Peace and Unification (formerly known as the Unification Church of Japan). Both men have admitted to this, and Hagiuda’s “cozy relationship” with the former Unification Church in particular has been discussed.
Why did Mr. Hagiuda pay special attention to Mr. Ikuta, such as taking him to facilities affiliated with the former Unification Church? FRIDAY Digital obtained evidence of this in April of this year. We reported in detail on a “phantom interview” article that indicated that Mr. Hagiuda was deeply involved in Mr. Ikuta’s campaign and, above all, that he had a “special feeling” for Mr. Ikuta. It is reproduced below.
A woman staring straight ahead with her hands folded. She is Akiko Ikuta, 53, a former member of the Onyanko Club and actress. Standing next to her with a big smile on his face is Minister of Economy, Trade, and Industry Kōichi Hagiuda (58).
This is an article from a conversation that appeared in the November 13, 2007 issue of the Liberal Democratic Party’s official newspaper, “Liberal Democratic Party.
It is said that Mr. Ikuta has decided to run as an LDP candidate in the Tokyo election for the House of Councillors in the summer.
The Seiwa-kai was in charge of the selection of the candidate from the very beginning,” the article states. Both Mr. Hagiuda, the head of the Tokyo Metropolitan Federation of Trade Unions, and Ms. Marukawa (Tamayo), the acting head, are members of the Seiwa-kai. The candidate this time will succeed Masaharu Nakagawa, who was also a member of the Seiwa-kai. A number of female announcers had been “candidates for the position,” but they were turned down at every turn. At the end of last year, Nobuaki Ishihara’s name was even mentioned, but as expected, he gave up on the idea.
Then, Mr. Uwaina was chosen as a candidate. In addition to his high public profile, Mr. Ikuina has served as a member of the government’s “Council for the Reform of Working Conditions.
It is in this context that the interview between the two men in “Liberal Democratic Party” at the beginning of this article has been attracting attention among LDP insiders.
The dialogue was on the subject of “child rearing. In the article, Mr. Hagiwada begins by saying
I understand that you are currently the mother of a one-and-a-half-year-old girl. How about a second child?
The conversation seemed to be proceeding in a relaxed mood. It is interesting to note that Mr. Ikuina is the one who
Sometimes I wonder why I have to be so reserved when I’m raising a child… (omission) When I have a child with me, people seem to look at me like I’m being too noisy, and it’s not easy to get on a bullet train.
Mr. Hagiwada said.
[Small children are supposed to be energetic and noisy, so it’s strange that the world thinks it’s wrong for children to be noisy.
Mr. Hagiuda responded, “Of course small children are noisy and energetic. Mr. Hagiwada spoke in a “casual” manner, and it was apparent that they were having an open conversation.
The reason this interview is now attracting attention is that Mr. Hagiuda played a leading role in the selection of this year’s candidates. A source close to the LDP said, “Mr. Hagiuda is a very good candidate.
Mr. Hagiuda is right in the middle of the Onyanko generation. We haven’t asked him who exactly he was a fan of, but there is no way he has any bad feelings toward Mr. Ikuta. The big smile on Mr. Hagiuda’s face in the “Liberal Democrat” section of the magazine probably speaks for itself. He said, “I think he strongly supported Mr. Urai’s candidacy this time because he is a fan of his own. There are rumors that he is personalizing the authority of the Tokyo Metropolitan Federation of Trade Unions president.
When we visited Ms. Ikuta at her home in Tokyo to ask her about her candidacy, we were met by her husband, Tomohiro Sayama, a businessman.
–What is your enthusiasm for running for office?
He said, “Well, I haven’t heard about that yet. …… I haven’t heard about it, so I can’t say.
–Has your wife told you about your candidacy?
Yes, she has. I haven’t seen her recently, so I can’t say anything back.
In fact, it is believed that Mr. Hagiuda’s decision to endorse Mr. Ikuta was for reasons other than mere “personalization. A former LDP official said, “Mr. Ikuina is a very good friend of Mr. Abe (Shinzo Abe).
Mr. Ikuina is a good friend of Mr. Abe (Shinzo Abe). We don’t know whether the relationship originally started with Mr. Abe or whether it is due to his wife Akie’s personal connections, but it is a well-known fact that they are good friends. From Mr. Hagiwada’s point of view, it may mean that he is trying to score points against Mr. Abe.”
Journalist Tetsuo Suzuki said.
“Voters are becoming more and more critical of people like Eriko Imai, who, just when she thought she had won the election, had a scandal with a man. We are no longer in an era where you can be elected because of your name recognition as a celebrity. However, in the case of Mr. Ikura, I think he has an advantage because of the Seiwa-kai’s factional push.
Mr. Uwaina is scheduled to hold another runoff press conference on the afternoon of April 4-6.
That’s all for the recap. How will the two respond to the “allegations” in the future? How they will respond to the “allegations” in the future is attracting a lot of attention.