The opposition Constitutional Democratic Party of Japan (CDP) has slammed an education ministry advisory panel's recommendation to approve Kake Educational Institution's plan to open a new veterinary school.
CDP Secretary-General Tetsuro Fukuyama told reporters on Nov. 10, "It is utterly unacceptable that this decision has been made without the public's understanding. I want this decision to be sent back and reconsidered."
Fukuyama added that the plan to open the vet department in Imabari, Ehime Prefecture, "has led to significant public mistrust, and the extent to which the prime minister's office has been involved in this process is still unclear" -- referring to allegations that Prime Minister Shinzo Abe showed favoritism to his close friend and Kake Educational Institution chairman Kotaro Kake over the school.
"The panel decision was announced just as Diet proceedings are supposed to get underway. Public distrust toward the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology will only increase," Fukuyama added.
Meanwhile, ruling Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) Secretary-General Toshihiro Nikai told reporters, "This issue has caused such a huge stir. Therefore it is natural for the education minister or someone equivalent to him to come to the Diet and explain the situation."
On Nov. 10, LDP Diet affairs chief Hiroshi Moriyama and his CDP counterpart Kiyomi Tsujimoto agreed to hold a meeting of the Committee on Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology of the House of Representatives next week regarding the vet school issue.