Japan Lawmakers Slam Govt's Mask Distribution Plan

Society Lifestyle Politics

Tokyo, April 2 (Jiji Press)--Japanese lawmakers from both the ruling and opposition camps on Thursday criticized the government's plan to distribute two cloth masks to every household in the country, with one of them saying he thought it was an April Fools' joke.

Prime Minister Shinzo Abe announced the measure Wednesday as part of efforts to curb infection with the new coronavirus.

The message to citizens on economic measures is too slow," Tetsuro Fukuyama, secretary-general of the main opposition Constitutional Democratic Party of Japan, told reporters. "Masks alone can't allay citizens" concerns."

Yuichiro Tamaki, head of the opposition Democratic Party for the People, blasted the measure, saying, "I thought it was an April Fools' joke," adding, "The government should distribute cash instead of masks."

DPFP lawmaker Teruhiko Mashiko posted a sarcastic tweet touching on cronyism allegations against the prime minister. "Are (the masks) made by a company run by a 'friend'?" the tweet read. "I'll preserve it forever as a souvenir once it arrives."

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press