TOKYO (Reuters) – More than 80% of respondents to a Twitter poll initiated by SoftBank Group Corp’s CEO Masayoshi Son would support a declaration of a state of emergency to fight the coronavirus, as the number of cases exceeded 100 in Tokyo for the first time on Saturday.
The poll by Son, who has 2.5 million Twitter followers, showed 82% of almost 240,000 respondents indicated support for tighter controls by authorities to fight the spread of the virus. The poll closed on Saturday evening.
A second, ongoing poll by Son indicated a similar level of backing for a unilateral declaration of a state of emergency by the Tokyo government.
While Tokyo authorities have urged people to stay home over the weekend, Son has joined other prominent figures including Rakuten Inc CEO Hiroshi Mikitani and rock musician Yoshiki in putting pressure on the central government to introduce stricter social distancing measures.
A poll of users of chat app Line conducted in partnership with Japan’s Health Ministry found that among more than 24 million respondents most are taking measures such as washing hands and avoiding crowds, but only 5.6% are teleworking.
Editing by Helen Popper