Former Prime Minister Yoshiro Mori may be probed by the Liberal Democratic Party over what role, if any, he played in the decision by the party's largest faction to continue an unlawful kickback scheme.

Prime Minister Fumio Kishida made the announcement during a session of the Upper House Budget Committee on Thursday morning, marking a new phase in the party’s response to an ongoing slush fund scandal that has hit the administration’s popularity.

“In order to clarify his political responsibility, he (Mori) could become the subject of further hearings from the party, as he’s one of those connected to the matter,” Kishida said, adding that he had yet to decide the exact target and scope of the additional probe.