The exemption of Liberal Democratic Party President Fumio Kishida and former Secretary-General Toshihiro Nikai from any internal punishment in relation to the party's slush funds scandal will likely spark further backlash both inside and outside the party, experts say.

As a party ethics committee formalizes an official reprimand of 39 members involved in the scandal on Thursday, there’s a high chance that public opinion might not be as forgiving as the party leadership hopes.

In a news conference Monday afternoon, LDP Secretary-General Toshimitsu Motegi announced that he had requested the committee to consider punishment for 27 Lower House members, 11 Upper House members and the chair of a local party branch.