According to a new report, a Japanese top official stated that this summer’s Olympics planned to be set in Tokyo might be canceled due to a recent resurgence of Covid-19 in many countries across the world that have plans to participate.
Reuters has reported that the secretary-general of the Liberal Democratic Party, Toshihiro Nikai, made comments to a Japanese broadcaster that if the games seem “impossible to do … then we have to stop, decisively.”
He went on to say that cancellation is “of course” a possibility, adding: “If the Olympics were to spread infection, then what are the Olympics for?”
However, Reuters has reported that the Tokyo Olympics Organizing Committee has stated that those who are preparing for the games remain fully committed to hosting them beginning on July 23rd.
While Olympic officials have hoped that the infection rates would have dropped as new vaccines are spread across the world, some nations are seeing new large spikes. For example, India, on Thursday, released an announcement that it had 200,000 new cases. Even Tokyo itself recorded a spike in new COVID-19 cases, which present greater concerns.
We have seen the Tokyo Olympics have already been delayed by a year which has led to an estimated cost over $15 billion.
According to the Associated Press, even if the Games go off, it will be a TV-only event. “Fans from abroad are banned, tourism is out, and there’ll be no room for neighborhood partying. Athletes are being told to arrive late, leave early and maneuver around a moving maze of rules.”
An infectious diseases expert at Keiyu Hospital in Yokohama, Dr. Norio Saguya, made a statement to the AP that the games should not take place. “It is best to not hold the Olympics given the considerable risks,” he stated.
At the beginning of the year, a Florida official informed the International Olympic Committee (IOC) that Florida is ready to host the summer games should Japan need to drop out.
Jimmy Patronis, State Chief Financial Officer, sent an official letter to the IOC President Thomas Bach “to encourage you to consider relocating the 2021 Olympics from Tokyo, Japan to the United States of America, and more specifically to Florida.”
“With media reports of leaders in Japan ‘privately’ concluding that they are too concerned about the pandemic for the 2021 Olympics to take place, there is still time to deploy a site selection team to Florida to meet with statewide and local officials on holding the Olympics in the Sunshine State,” Patropnis informed the IOC in the letter. “I would welcome the opportunity to pitch Florida and help you make the right contacts to get this done.”
Patronis bragged about Florida’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic.
“When most of the major states were shutting down their economies, we were fortunate enough to have a Governor that recognized the important balance of fighting the virus with keeping the economy open,” he continued. “Moreover, Governor [Ron] DeSantis has partnered with the private sector to rapidly distribute vaccines to our most vulnerable populations. Unlike other states, when the COVID-19 vaccine comes to Florida it doesn’t just sit on the shelf wrapped in government red tape; it moves fast to protect our communities.”