社説:沖縄防衛局長 選挙介入が常態なのか

(Mainichi Japan) February 2, 2012
Editorial: Gov't intervention in Okinawa election unacceptable
社説:沖縄防衛局長 選挙介入が常態なのか

The chief of the Defense Ministry's Okinawa Defense Bureau was recently found to have held a "lecture" for bureau employees about the upcoming Feb. 12 Ginowan mayoral election. It emerged that the bureau had earlier made a list of voters pertaining to employees and their relatives living in the city, which houses the United States Marine Corps Air Station Futenma.
 防衛省沖縄防衛局が沖縄県宜野湾市長選(12日投開票)の「有権者リスト」を作成し、真部朗(まなべろう)局長が職員に「講話」を行っていた。

The actions of the bureau and its chief, Ro Manabe, constitute electoral intervention by the government, which is unacceptable.
政府機関による選挙への介入とも言うべきもので、言語道断である。

The revelations came after a Japanese Communist Party legislator raised the issue in the Diet.
 共産党が国会で取り上げて明らかになった。

The ensuing survey by the Defense Ministry has disclosed that the Okinawa Defense Bureau compiled a list of its employees living in Ginowan as well as employees who have relatives in the city -- whose numbers totaled 80 -- at the instruction of Manabe.
Employees on the list were gathered for his lecture, in which he called on them to vote in the upcoming mayoral election.
防衛省の調査によると、真部局長の指示で同市在住の職員や同市に親族がいる職員80人のリストを作り、職員への講話で市長選への投票を呼び掛けていた。

During the lecture, Manabe reportedly introduced the profiles of those who were expected to throw their hats in the mayoral race and pointed out that the will of Ginowan residents is important as the city hosts the Futenma air base.
 講話では、市長選立候補予定者を紹介し、米軍普天間飛行場を抱える宜野湾市民の民意が重要であることなどを指摘したという。

Although the Defense Ministry survey concluded that the local bureau chief did not "support any specific potential candidate," no record of the content of the lecture exists to back up the finding.
「特定の立候補予定者を支持する内容は確認されなかった」との調査結果だが、講話内容の記録はない。

The Public Offices Election Law prohibits any election campaign that utilizes the position of a national public servant, while the Self-Defense Forces (SDF) Law strictly regulates political activities by SDF personnel, including civilian members.
 公選法は、国家公務員による地位を利用した選挙運動を禁じ、自衛隊法は、文官を含む自衛隊員の政治的行為を厳しく制限している。

The outcome of the Ginowan mayoral election will have a major impact on the planned relocation of the Futenma base to the Henoko district of Nago in Okinawa Prefecture.
 宜野湾市長選の行方は、普天間移設問題にも大きな影響を与える。

If a lecture is given about potential candidates shortly before the election, it is only natural for attendants to think that the lecture hints at endorsing a prospective candidate favoring the government's policy on the base issue -- even if no direct mention is made about supporting a specific person.
その選挙直前に候補予定者などについて講話を行えば、特定候補予定者への支持に直接、言及がなかったとしても、基地問題の政府方針に都合がよい候補予定者の後押しに含意がある、と受け取るのが普通だろう。

Okinawans have erupted in anger time and again over government blunders relating to the Futenma relocation issue.
These include inappropriate remarks by a former head of the Okinawa Defense Bureau and gaffes by former Defense Minister Yasuo Ichikawa in the Diet.
 普天間をめぐっては、前沖縄防衛局長の不適切発言、前防衛相の国会答弁などが沖縄の怒りを買った。

Manabe's words and actions only add fuel to the fire and are set to deepen Okinawans' distrust in the government and make it even harder to settle the base issue. The local bureau chief, as a matter of course, should be sacked.
真部局長の言動が沖縄の不信を増幅させ、問題解決を一層難しくすることは明らかだ。更迭が当然である。

It should be noted that Manabe had also given lectures ahead of two elections in Nago -- the Nago mayoral election in January 2010 and the Nago Municipal Assembly election in September that year -- both of which focused on whether the city would agree to hosting the functions of the Futenma base.
 見逃せないのは、真部局長がかつて、政府が普天間の移設先とする同県名護市の選挙でも講話を行っていたことである。名護市では10年1月に市長選、同9月に市議選があり、普天間移設受け入れが争点になっていた。

Manabe gave the lectures in his capacity as head of the Okinawa Defense Bureau.
当時の沖縄防衛局長は真部氏だった。

The government should also investigate the timing and other details of these lectures.
政府はこの講話の時期や実態についても調査すべきだ。

When a referendum on whether to accept a plan to construct an offshore heliport in Nago in connection with the Futenma relocation was held in December 1997, employees of the Naha Defense Facilities Administration Bureau staged a de facto vote-gathering campaign by visiting voters door-to-door and distributing brochures -- drawing criticism from local residents.
 同市では97年12月、普天間移設に絡んで海上ヘリポート建設計画の是非を問う市民投票が実施されたが、那覇防衛施設局の職員が戸別訪問やパンフレット配布などで事実上の集票活動を展開、地元で批判を浴びたことがある。

If such interventions in elections and other events are found to have repeatedly taken place, they should be regarded as a structural problem.
選挙などへの介入が繰り返し行われていたとすれば、構造的問題である。

Defense Minister Naoki Tanaka, who has supervision over such issues, has been blasted over his poor remarks. Regarding the frequency of U.S. military helicopter flights around the Futenma base, for example, he said, "There aren't so many (helicopters), are there?" He has also been targeted over repeated apologies and corrections during Diet sessions.
 これらの問題を監督する田中直紀防衛相は、普天間周辺での米軍ヘリ飛行について「そんなに多くないのでは」と発言、国会答弁でも訂正、陳謝を繰り返すなど、拙劣な発言と対応が目立つ。

The opposition parties have questioned Tanaka's qualifications as defense minister.
野党からは資質を問う声も出ている。

The government faces a crucial test in discontinuing use of the Futenma base at its present location and removing the danger posed to residents in the vicinity.
 普天間飛行場の固定化(継続使用)を回避し、周辺住民の危険性を除去するために、政府は今後、正念場を迎える。

Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda should rise to the forefront and do his utmost to resolve the Futenma issue.
ここは、野田佳彦首相が前面に立って、普天間問題の解決に全力を尽くすしかない。
[PR]

by kiyoshimat | 2012-02-04 03:50 | 英字新聞

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