Tokyo Olympics: Covid-19 serious cases reach a new high but IOC, Suga, and Koike in denial
Kanako Mita and Lee Jay Walker
Modern Tokyo Times
The Olympic countdown is getting nearer despite the majority in Japan hoping that it will be postponed or canceled because of the ongoing coronavirus (Covid-19) crisis. Despite this, the International Olympic Committee (IOC), Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga, and Tokyo Governor Yuriko Koike remain in denial. Hence, it seems that the IOC, Suga, and Koike are hoping that by ignoring the unpopularity of the Olympics – and the serious concerns that persist – that the Olympics will go ahead based on their respective shoddy responses.
In the last 24 hours, deaths from coronavirus reached 12,000 in Japan. Similarly, the number of serious cases reached a new high of 1,303 people needing ventilators or being helped in intensive care units. However, the more unpopular the Olympics become, the more the IOC, Suga, and Koike go into defensive mode. Therefore, issues concerning increasing deaths from coronavirus, new variants, the current increase of coronavirus in many Asian nations (India to Thailand), the unpopularity of holding the Olympics, the medical system being under strain in many hospitals, healthy athletes being given vaccination priority over vulnerable groups, and other important issues, are all being brushed under the carpet by the IOC, Suga, and Koike.
NHK reports, “Japan’s medical system continues to be under strain. And concerns are mounting over holding the Tokyo Olympics and Paralympics that kick off in two months. The head of Japan’s organizing committee says it has reduced the number of doctors and nurses required for the Games by 30 percent, to about 7,000.”
The Tokyo Medical Practitioners Association (TMPA) is flabbergasted by medical staff being utilized for the Olympics during the ongoing coronavirus crisis. Hence, the TMPA recently notified Suga that the medical profession “have their hands full and have almost no spare capacity.”
Modern Tokyo Times recently said, “The usual mantra of Suga and Koike is that they can provide a safe environment for the Olympics. However, many parts of Japan – including Tokyo – are still under the State of Emergency. Similarly, with people dying at home recently in Osaka and the prefecture of Hyogo because of hospital and medical shortages, it is callous to take medical workers away to cater for an unpopular Olympics.”
Sawako Utsumi says, “The IOC even implied that the Olympics and Paralympics are fine even if Tokyo remains under the State of Emergency in Japan. Hence, despite the medical profession facing shortages, new variants being more contagious, increasing deaths from coronavirus, and new highs of people in serious condition; this is all permissible for the IOC. Therefore, shame on Suga and Koike for going along with such a callous IOC approach to the ongoing coronavirus crisis in Japan.”
The leaders of powerful Japanese companies from Softbank to Rakuten have also questioned the holding of the Olympics. Masayoshi Son, CEO and SoftBank Group Corp founder, said, “Currently more than 80% of people want the Olympics to be postponed or canceled. Who and on what authority is it being forced through?”
CEO Hiroshi Mikitani of Rakuten also opposes the Olympics. He said, holding the Olympics would be a “suicide mission.”
https://stopcovid19.metro.tokyo.lg.jp/en/ – Tokyo Metropolitan Government website for updates about the coronavirus crisis in Tokyo.
https://toyokeizai.net/sp/visual/tko/covid19/en.html – Japan and Tokyo Covid-19 news with more analysis
https://covid19japan.com/ – Japan regional coronavirus statistics
https://www.worldometers.info/coronavirus/ World coronavirus statistics
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