Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga’s sudden announcement of his intention to resign at a time when the nation is battling a resurgence of COVID-19 infections was met Friday with shock and criticism by many individuals in Japan, with medical staff lamenting his sluggish and insufficient response to battle the virus.
“I thought he would stay on (as prime minister) a little longer,” stated a 35-year-old feminine nurse in Sapporo on the northernmost essential island of Hokkaido, who was amongst these caught off guard by Suga’s abrupt announcement.
Suga’s intent to step down got here amid sturdy public criticism over his dealing with of the COVID-19 pandemic, with the Delta variant quickly spreading throughout the nation and now 21 out of Japan’s 47 prefectures underneath COVID state of emergency.
He was additionally criticized for going forward with the Tokyo Olympics and Paralympics regardless of public opposition amid mounting issues over the unfold of the virus.
“Japan lagged behind in securing and distributing vaccines, and the Suga administration did not provide any information (about it),” stated Yasuhiko Hirata, chairman of the medical affiliation of Fukuoka metropolis in southwestern Japan.
“If (Suga’s government) is going to pursue vaccination policies, I wish he could have better handled the vaccinations rather than (going ahead in) holding the Olympics,” stated Haruka Honda, 34, who was at a vaccination web site for younger individuals in Tokyo’s Shibuya district.