FOCUS: Kishida Moving to Eliminate "Negative Legacies"


Tokyo, Dec. 27 (Jiji Press)--Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida is rushing to eliminate "negative legacies," such as those carried over from the years when Shinzo Abe was in office as leader of the country.

Kishida is apparently trying to remove sources of concern as much as possible to avoid being grilled by the opposition camp at next year's regular session of the Diet, the country's parliament.

As part of the efforts, Kishida at a news conference last week announced a decision to discard cloth face masks the state had secured to cope with a shortage of the protective gear early on in the novel coronavirus pandemic, including "Abenomasks," which were procured under the Abe administration. The decision was made in light of huge storage costs, with numerous Abenomasks remaining in stock.

"I have issued instructions for distributing (stocked) cloth masks to people who need them and discarding (all remaining masks) by the end of fiscal 2021," he said at the beginning of the news conference.

But Kishida's strategy involves the risk of angering Abe, who leads the biggest faction in the ruling Liberal Democratic Party.

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press