Politicians can’t understand the opinions of experts.
The Japanese government’s expert council to discuss measures against the new coronavirus has presented its views and recommendations as an expert, but in the process, the government requested that some wording be deleted from the report, according to interviews with those involved.
In some cases, phrases such as “even asymptomatic people have been infected” were removed because of the possibility of causing a panic, and the relationship between the experts and the government is likely to be questioned.
Members of the government’s expert panel have issued 10 statements and recommendations in response to the spread of the disease, but officials say they have amended or deleted some of the wording at the request of the government.
In the second “opinion” issued on March 2, the experts initially stated that “asymptomatic or mildly ill people may be strongly driving the spread of the disease,” but in the end, they changed the wording to “even mildly ill people may play an important role in the spread of the disease without being aware of it.
Just before this, on February 28, Hokkaido declared its own state of emergency, and the government explained that it could not do anything for people who are asymptomatic and may cause panic.
After this, the experts discussed with the government to come up with their views and recommendations, and afterwards, they held a press conference to present them.
Some experts believe that cooperation with the government is necessary to make an effective proposal, while others believe that they should present their own views as experts, and the relationship and division of roles between the experts and the government will be questioned.
The members of the expert committee are expected to review the series of responses and present their thinking on preparedness for the second wave.