The House of Councilors Steering Committee on Friday killed an opposition-proposed resolution calling on former Construction Minister Kishiro Nakamura to resign from Parliament over a conviction for bribe-taking, which he has appealed, arguing he is not guilty.

The panel decided not to send the resolution to a plenary session of the House of Representatives. The panel vote on whether to do so was even, with the opposition camp and the New Komeito party supporting the resolution, and the Liberal Democratic Party and the New Conservative Party voting against it.

The proposal was killed by panel chairman Takao Fujii, who was called on to cast the deciding vote.

The LDP said Nakamura should decide himself whether to quit Parliament.

Nakamura sent a message to Fujii through his lawyer saying he has no intention to resign, as he believes he is innocent, according to panel officials. He has appealed to the Supreme Court and said he wants to continue political activities.

The opposition camp submitted a similar resolution against Nakamura in October 1997, but it was scrapped.

Nakamura, 52, left the LDP after the scandal broke in 1994. He is now an independent member of the Diet.

The Tokyo High Court on April 25 rejected an appeal by Nakamura against his conviction by a lower court for taking 10 million yen in bribes from an executive of Kajima Corp.

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