Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga announced on Monday that his government was “considering” a new emergency in the Tokyo region in the wake of a resurgence of coronavirus contamination, which the country’s health condition was perceived as “very serious”.
The Japanese leader also said he hoped the vaccination campaign would begin by the end of February, adding that he would be the first person to receive an injection at a press conference.
Calling on the population to avoid unnecessary excursions, Suga said the government is preparing to change the law to allow companies that do not comply with orders to limit or temporarily close their hours. At the same time, he promised incentives.
The Prime Minister reiterated Japan’s commitment to host the Tokyo – 2020 Olympic Games, which have been postponed to the summer of 2021 due to the epidemic, reiterating that their grip is “proof that humanity has defeated the virus”. .
Yoshihide Suga, the successor to Shinzo Abe who resigned in September for health reasons, has come under fire for his government’s handling of the health crisis.
According to official figures, Japan – which has escaped the pandemic compared to many other countries with nearly 240,000 infections and fewer than 3,600 deaths – has seen a sharp rise in pollution since November, with a bar of 4,000 new cases in 24 hours for the first time on Thursday.
On Saturday, the governors of Tokyo and three neighboring divisions urged the government to declare a new state of emergency, which, after April and May 2020, gradually extended to the entire country.
But the government has so far been reluctant to do so for fear of the Japanese economy collapsing after facing a third recession.
Mr Suga admitted Monday that “a strong message is needed.
He said the government was “considering setting up an emergency” with measures to reduce infections in bars and restaurants.
Emergency allows local governors to call businesses to their door and residents to stay at home, but this is not complied with or approved.
No information has yet been filtered on the extent of this emergency, with some local media reporting that it could take effect from next Saturday, but will be more limited than before.
It is also unclear whether schools will be affected after Japan became one of the first countries to call for the closure of schools last February.
On vaccines, Suga said his government will be in the U.S. by the end of this month. He said he expects accurate data from pharmaceutical companies and that injections will begin by the end of February.
The preference for these vaccines raises concerns about “health workers, the elderly and retirement home employees,” who were the first to receive one of the vaccines, although the population is relatively suspicious.