Tokyo Governor and PM Abe to focus more on coronavirus after the Olympics postponed
Sawako Utsumi and Lee Jay Walker
Modern Tokyo Times
The Tokyo Governor (Yuriko Koike) is suddenly focusing strongly on the coronavirus (Covid-19) crisis after the 2020 Tokyo Olympics was postponed. However, to the layperson, it looks rather cynical. Despite this, people throughout Tokyo and the whole country must remain vigilant outside of any political posturing.
Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and Koike had focused mainly on the economic angle of the Olympics based on massaging information before the postponement. Yet, suddenly, Koike is now advising Tokyoites to refrain from venturing outside at the weekend. Hence, the sudden sterner approach makes you wonder why?
South Korea also hinted at Japan having ulterior motives. Thereby, the government of this nation issued a statement saying, “We can’t help but question whether Japan has other motives than containing the outbreak.”
In Sendai, on March 21, over 50,000 people viewed the Olympic torch. Thus, if Abe and Koike were so focused on coronavirus, then why did they tolerate such a risk? Hence, the rapid u-turn by Abe and Koike appears to be political opportunism after both failed in their venture to maintain the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.
Therefore, after hearing of an increase of 41 cases in Tokyo – and in the knowledge that the Olympics was postponed – Koike uttered it is an “important phase in preventing an explosive rise in the number of infections.”
It is hoped that Japan will focus more on testing and being open with the entire population. This relates to various dubious areas about lack of coronavirus testing; the tough criteria; who is being counted; are elderly people dying from pneumonia being given autopsies; and other important areas. Thus, it appeared that Abe and Koike were focused on economic angles and protecting the Olympics despite the horrendous international coronavirus crisis.
Hence, with Koike now being free to refocus on the coronavirus crisis, it appears that Tokyoites will face growing restrictions. Therefore, with the writing on the wall for the Olympics being at least four weeks ago; then why did Abe and Koike insist on the Olympics being viable until only a few days ago?
Overall, the timing of greater concern does leave a sour taste because coronavirus entered Japan on January 16. At the same time, the global crisis began to erupt many weeks ago. Thus, while it is positive that Koike can fully concentrate on the coronavirus crisis, it is still perplexing why she didn’t call for the postponement of the Olympics until Australia and Canada took the decision away from Japan?
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