October 21, 2017
TOKYO- With Nissan Motor Co.'s false vehicle inspections believed to date back many years, the responsibility of its current and former executives, including Chairman Carlos Ghosn, is likely to become an issue.
"There's no doubt that the misconduct continued during the period when Ghosn was chief executive officer," Nissan President and CEO Hiroto Saikawa told a press conference on Thursday.
Ghosn served as CEO of the major Japanese automaker from June 2001 until he handed over the post to Saikawa in April this year.
Saikawa also said false inspections had taken place "since a long time ago" and became "habitual."
The company will work to identify specifically when the misconduct began, in an investigation with cooperation from lawyers and others.
Following the forming of an alliance between Nissan and French automaker Renault SA in 1999, Ghosn became president of Nissan at a time when the Japanese company was mired in a management crisis.
Known as a cost cutter, Ghosn led Nissan's turnaround efforts while doubling as president and CEO of Renault since 2005.
After Nissan last year took control of Mitsubishi Motors Corp. following the revelation of its mileage data falsification, Ghosn additionally assumed the post of chairman of the scandal-hit company, while naming Saikawa as co-CEO of Nissan.
In September this year, it was revealed that unqualified technicians had taken part in inspections of finished vehicles at Nissan's four domestic plants.
Furthermore, it was reported this week that the misconduct continued even after Saikawa announced the implementation of preventive measures at his first press conference on the matter on Oct. 2.
"The instruction for all final inspections to be carried out by qualified inspectors was known but not followed," Saikawa lamented at the press conference on Thursday.
The comment appeared to suggest flaws in Nissan's corporate governance. Jiji Press
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