11 July 2024
Half of the Japanese public think the Olympics will take place this summer whether they want it to or not, a survey by Yomiuri daily newspaper showed on Monday, less than two months before the Games’ scheduled opening. Jayson Albano reports.
The Yomiuri telephonic poll, carried out from June 4-6, found 50 percent of the 1,070 respondents want the Games to be held this summer, with 48 percent in favour of cancellation. Postponement was not given as an option.
The Olympics are scheduled to begin in less than two months, after being postponed a year due to the ongoing global health crisis.
But questions still remain over how Tokyo can keep volunteers, athletes, officials, and the Japanese public safe.
The nation is currently in its fourth wave, which has seen rising numbers of severe cases.
On Friday, former Olympic medallist Kaori Yamaguchi said Japan has been ‘cornered’ into pressing ahead with the Games, despite public opposition.
Yomiuri’s new poll showed public support for Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga’s administration has dropped to its lowest, at 37%.
Most respondents said virus measures for Olympics athletes and participants are not enough.
However, Top government officials have repeatedly promised to make the Games ‘safe and secure’.
While Olympic organisers are set to take a decision later this month on how many spectators, if any, will be allowed to attend the Games, the poll found over a fourth surveyed believe the Games will go ahead without spectators.
A separate poll by Japan News Network on Monday found that 44 percent of respondents support the Games going ahead this summer.
Another 31 percent were in favour of cancellation, while 24 percent called for another postponement, the poll found.