Board of Audit does not recognize special nature of security asserted by Defense Bureau as grounds to pay asking price for Henoko base construction security


November 9, 2017Ryukyu Shimpo


The Okinawa Defense Bureau executed a service agreement in 2015-2016 for on-sea security to support the construction of a new U.S. base in Henoko using a cost estimate by a private contractor that was roughly twice the “public works design labor unit price” (publicized unit price) used in calculating labor costs for public works.

According to the Board of Audit, the cost estimate presented by Tokyo-based Rising Sun Security Service, with which the agreement was executed, was a daily wage per worker of 39,000 to 59,400 yen (roughly USD $343 to $522) for nine hours of labor.

However, the actual daily wage paid to security workers was only around 9,000 to 10,000 yen (roughly USD $79 to $88), meaning there was a significant discrepancy between the company’s estimate and the actually-paid wages.


The Defense Bureau stated that the “special nature of the job” was the reason it did not use the publicized unit price, considering the fierce protest movement being carried out at sea.

However, the Board of Audit determined that the on-sea work did not require any special skills on the part of the security workers, and was merely “general work” involving sounding warnings to approaching protest boats.

The Board also determined that because the Defense Bureau deployed a greater number of security workers than usual, caution was being taken in terms of numbers, and therefore did not recognize a “special nature” requiring calculation of labor costs at a labor unit price of twice the usual amount.


Rising Sun Security Service refused to comment to the Ryukyu Shimpo regarding the opinion of the Board of Audit. In the past, other problems arose regarding the company’s on-sea services, including the fact that overtime wages were not being paid to on-site security workers.


The Board of Audit said nothing about the return of the overestimated portion of nearly 200 million yen (roughly USD $1.76 million), which was paid using citizens’ taxes.

The Defense Bureau and Rising Sun Security Service must be held accountable for this amount, and for the fact that security workers were actually being employed at low wages.


(English translation by T&CT and Sandi Aritza)


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