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NHK’s Momii wants employees to be ‘aware’ following sex-in-car report

Friday July 15
Friday July 15

TOKYO (TR) – The chairman public broadcaster NHK has suggested that employees be “aware” regarding their conduct following a report in a tabloid that documents the extra-marital affair of two unnamed employees, reports Sankei Sports (July 8).

“Including myself, NHK employees, especially those who appear on television, have influence unlike ordinary people,” said Katsuto Momii on Thursday at a regular press conference at the broadcaster’s headquarters in Shibuya Ward. “I want them to be aware of this influence and to act accordingly.”

The chairman’s comments were a response to a question from the press corps about a report appearing in the July 15 issue of weekly tabloid Friday that documents illicit meetings between a male announcer in his 30s, who is married with at least one child, and a female contract employee. Both employees, who are given pseudonyms in the article, appear on the weekday news program “Marugoto Yamanashi,” which is broadcast from the NHK Kofu Broadcasting Station.

The report includes photos of the two announcers engaging in a tryst inside a van parked along a road on an evening in late June. According to the report, the couple had been meeting several times each week, with each session extending for about one hour.

Prior to Momii’s statement, NHK’s chief of public relations said, “I would like to refrain from commenting on the matter due to its private nature,” which is the same response Friday received when it requested comment from the broadcaster. The chief, however, added that the actions of all NHK employees are dealt with “in accordance with internal criteria.”

Momii added that he could not comment on the actions of any one particular individual.

Citing personal reasons, both announcers have not appeared for work since June 30. The issue of Friday went on sale the following day.