Local assemblyman in Aichi suggests handing out pierced condoms to newlyweds

SHINSHIRO, Aichi -- An assemblyman here came under fire after suggesting that condoms with holes in them be distributed to residents who register their marriage, it has been learned.

The comment was made by 49-year-old Shinshiro city assemblyman Tomonaga Nagata during a regular assembly meeting in June. The assembly is set to delete the comment from the minutes of the meeting. Assembly chair Shogo Natsume issued a stern warning to Nagata on July 16.

The assembly has received phone calls saying the comment was offensive.

Nagata was addressing ideas for promotional projects for the 10th anniversary of the city's administration next year. He also suggested giving out locally grown Japanese yams that are said to boost sexual energy. At the end of his speech, Nagata commented that his remarks might have been inappropriate.

Nagata told reporters that he didn't mean to hurt the feelings of those who don't have children, or of anyone else.

"I cannot deny that my comments were disgraceful, and I'm sorry," Nagata said.

He went on to explain that he made the remarks as he hoped that people would get married and raise children in the city. In a Japan Policy Council study in May, Shinshiro was the only city in Aichi Prefecture listed as being at risk of vanishing.

July 18, 2014(Mainichi Japan)