A Japanese official says canceling Tokyo Olympics is still an option

A senior Japanese official said canceling this year’s Olympics in Tokyo remains an option if the COVID-19 virus crisis becomes too dreadful, as the fourth wave of infections surges less than the planned start of the Games before 100 days.

Toshihiro Nikai, secretary-general of the Liberal Democratic Party, said in comments to broadcaster TBS that “If it seems impossible to do it any more, then we have to stop, decisively”.

Nikai said that Cancellation is “of course” an option, and he added. “If the Olympics were to spread infection then what are the Olympics for?”

A key backer of Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga, party heavyweight Nikai is known for his frank comments, which come as many other ruling party legislator has avoided discussing the hot button issue of a possible cancellation.

The world’s great sporting event has already been delayed for a year and especially is being held without international spectators.

Osaka suffering a record number of cases and Japan is grappling with rising coronavirus infections, with numbers trending higher in Tokyo after the government ended a state of emergency.

The government of Japan is pushing ahead with preparations incorporating social distancing measures and other limitations for the Games set to begin on July 23, with a scaled-back torch relay underway.

Taro Kono, a popular minister in charge of Japan’s vaccination drive, said on a separate TV program according to Kyodo News that “We’ll hold the Games in a way that’s feasible,”. “That may be without spectators,” he added.

A senior International Monetary Fund official said on Wednesday that Cancellation or postponing the Games would probably not hurt Japan’s economy much but would have an immense effect on Tokyo’s service sector.

Dr. Dhillon Randeep

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