Former Deputy Governor Takeo Hamauzu was accused of perjury when testifying on Tsukiji market relocation. (Photo: Stock File/FIS)
Former deputy governor faces accusations related to Tsukiji market relocation
Friday, April 07, 2017, 01:40 (GMT + 9)
A former Tokyo deputy governor has been accused of falsely testifying about his role in purchasing contaminated land to host Tsukiji fish market.
Former Governor Takeo Hamauzu was accused of perjury while testifying before a special committee of the Tokyo Metropolitan Assembly, which is looking into how the decision was made to buy the plot of waterfront land in the Toyosu district, where a gas plant previously stood to revamp the fish market, Japan Times reported.
The former deputy governor, a close aide of former Gov. Shintaro Ishihara, who gave the green light to the relocation plan, was Tokyo’s main negotiator with Tokyo Gas Co., which owned the land.
The former deputy governor told the committee in March that he was not involved in the negotiations with Tokyo Gas after both sides reached a basic agreement on the relocation plan in July 2001.
Some committee members said records submitted by the metropolitan government and Tokyo Gas indicated Hamauzu had received reports on the matter even after the basic agreement was reached.
“I have no recollection, and there were no records that say I responded to such reports,” Hamauzu said, describing the allegations as “nonsense.”
In his defense, Hamauzu said he was in charge of markets other than Tsukiji and was no longer responsible for negotiations on its relocation after July 2001.
The new market in Toyosu was scheduled to open last November. But Gov. Yuriko Koike, who took office in August, decided to put the move on hold after learning of soil, air pollution and construction concerns at the new site.
Meanwhile, Hakubun Shimomura, head of the party's Tokyo wing and executive acting secretary-general of the national party, stressed that the facility in Toyosu is said to cost on the order of JPY 5 million (USD 45,000) per day.
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