A Liberal Democratic Party panel decided Thursday to recommend that Koji Kakizawa quit the party after defying party wishes and declaring his candidacy in the Tokyo gubernatorial election in April.
Upon a request earlier this week by LDP Secretary General Yoshiro Mori, the LDP panel mulled disciplinary action, including expulsion, against Kakizawa, a Lower House member and former foreign minister. Of the 18 members, 13 agreed on recommending that Kakizawa be given the opportunity to leave the party on his own, said Junzo Iwasaki, the panel’s chairman. “Both LDP members and the public will understand our decision,” he said. The panel will wait for a response from Kakizawa until noon Monday, he added.
Kakizawa declared in mid-February that he will run in the Tokyo poll despite moves by LDP leaders to field former U.N. Undersecretary General Yasushi Akashi.