Japanese councillor resigns amid harassment allegations involving Australian mayor’s daughter

Following allegations of sexual harassment, Norio Nagata, vice speaker of Minokamo city council, resigned after Mayor Hiroto Fujii issued an apology to Dubbo, Australia.

The vice speaker of Minokamo city council in Gifu Prefecture, central Japan, tendered his resignation following allegations of sexual harassment towards the daughter of an Australian mayor during a party last month, as reported by the council office on Friday.

Norio Nagata stepped down from his position after Mayor Hiroto Fujii issued an apology email to Dubbo, Minokamo’s sister city in Australia, addressing the incident involving Nagata and the daughter of Mathew Dickerson, the mayor of Dubbo.

The altercation occurred during a welcome reception on April 3, when Nagata, 71, allegedly made inappropriate advances towards the mayor’s daughter, who is in her 20s, while singing karaoke at an afterparty.

Nagata defended his actions earlier in the week, asserting that he intended to enhance the party atmosphere and denying any malicious intentions. However, he expressed regret for his actions. Despite his resignation from the vice speaker position, Nagata intends to retain his seat as a council member.

Mathew Dickerson confirmed the incident, acknowledging his daughter’s surprise and deeming Nagata’s behaviour inappropriate. While the family briefly discussed the issue the following day, they did not pursue further action, considering it not serious enough to warrant escalation.

In response to the incident, Mayor Dickerson extended his gratitude for Mayor Fujii’s apology, formally accepting it on behalf of Dubbo.