TOKYO: Former Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has apologized in the Lower House of Parliament for false statements he had made earlier regarding an allegation that a group managing his political funds partially covered the costs of dinner receptions for supporters.
Sources close to the matter said the lower house's research bureau found Abe made 118 statements in Parliament that were incongruous with the facts, reports Xinhua news agency.
Such lies, reportedly, comprise denials by his camp of covering the shortfall of the supporters' dinner functions and the need to keep financial records.
"I want to make a sincere apology to the public and to all members of the ruling and opposition parties for bringing about this situation," Abe told the lower house's steering committee on Friday, but denied any wrongdoing.
"The accounting was done without my knowledge. I had checked with my office again and again. I gave answers to the Diet to the best of my knowledge at that time.
"But ultimately, some of what I said was contrary to the facts," the former leader said.
What local media described as a "rare correction of past statements by a former Prime Minister", Abe's apology followed a press conference he gave the previous day stating he had no knowledge of any missteps regarding bookkeeping, but apologized for making what transpired to be false statements.
Japanese prosecutors have decided not to indict Abe over allegations that his support group failed to report spending and revenue related to annual parties thrown for his supporters at high-class Tokyo hotels in its political fund reports. (IANS)