Daily Management Review

Japan Likely To Hold Olympics With Only Local Spectators: Reports


Japan Likely To Hold Olympics With Only Local Spectators: Reports
Japan is planning to hold the Tokyo Olympics with only domestic spectators despite the Covid-19 pandemic, according to media reports. The organizers are also planning to closely monitor the movements of members of the foreign media at the Games to prevent spreading of the pandemic.
According to a report published on Wednesday in the Asahi newspaper, with the wider roll out of Covid-19 vaccines and the decline in case numbers in the country, the leaning of more of the Japanese government officials and the organizers of the 2020 Tokyo Olympics are towards holding the Games with domestic spectators only.
This stance contrasts the previous position of the organizers and the Japanese government from about a month ago when the major thinking among Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga's administration was that the Olympics, which are slated to begin on July 23, should be held without the presence of any spectators, said the report.
There has however been strong opposition to the holding of the Summer Olympics Games from the public and medical experts who argued that there could be more Covid-19 infections and overloading of the country’s medical facilities because of the Games even though there were assurances from Suga's administration about the strict consideration for health safety at the Games.
There will be strict monitoring of the members of the overseas media at the Games so that they do not leave pre-registered areas to address concerns among the general public opf the country, Tokyo 2020 President Seiko Hashimoto had said on Tuesday.
According to the Asahi and other local media, Hashimoto added that GPS will be used for monitoring of members of the foreign media and they will not be allowed to visit the homes of their local friends or any area that is not on the schedule.
The Japanese media also quoted Hashimoto as saying that the organisers of the game will hold consultations with the Japanese government, as well as the Tokyo administration before finalizing plans for spectators by the end of the current month.
The organizers have already prohibited foreign spectators from attending the Olympics and they may also keep out Japanese spectators from the Games that the organisers have promised will be held in a completely sanitised "bubble" in order to minimize risks of contagion of the pandemic.
Japan has not seen the explosive outbreaks that have been witnessed in some other countries even though the country has seen a total of more than 760,000 cases and more than 13,600 deaths from of the pandemic. A state of emergency is still in force in Tokyo and other regions and which is slated to be lifted on June 20.
There is also caution among the athletes about the pandemic outlook. Australia on Wednesday joined Taiwan in pulling out of the final baseball qualifying tournament for the Games due to "insurmountable" challenges amid the pandemic.