The largest faction of the ruling Liberal Democratic Party previously led by late former Prime Minister Shinzo Abe is at a crossroads, with its leadership team having virtually fallen apart due to an unfolding political funds scandal that may threaten the group's future.

A wave of frustration and panic is sweeping across the Seiwa Seisaku Kenkyukai faction after one of its members revealed how slush funds were created and an order to remain silent was placed on members over the subject.

Last Wednesday, a very unhappy Hiroyuki Miyazawa, a faction member who stepped down as deputy defense minister due to the scandal, grumbled to reporters that he had been told "not to talk" about the practice.