John Oliver: Should the Summer Olympic Games go ahead amid surge in Covid cases?

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Television host John Oliver. (Photo: Brent N. Clarke/FilmMagic)
Television host John Oliver. (Photo: Brent N. Clarke/FilmMagic)
  • The Summer Olympic Games are due to start next month.
  • Billions of dollars have been spent on the event already as Covid cases continue to surge.
  • TV host John Oliver feels that money is the main motivator for the event to continue.


The Tokyo Olympic games is set to take place from 23 July to 8 August after the massive sporting event was cancelled in 2020 due to the Covid-19 pandemic. The Paralympic Games will follow shortly after from 24 August to 5 September.

As cases in Japan start to surge again, Last Week Tonight host John Oliver is questioning whether it is a good decision to continue, reports The Hollywood Reporter.

"Despite the fact that the pandemic is very still much not over, the Games seem to be going ahead, and not everyone in Japan is thrilled about that," John said on his show on Sunday night.

The BBC reports that Tokyo 2020 president Seiko Hashimoto is "100%" certain the Games will go ahead, despite a state of emergency in the city.

According to John, organisers seem to be basing their decision mostly on the fact that they've already spent billions of dollars on the Games. "While I truly hope for everyone’s benefit that this works out, you can’t help feeling that the main motivator in this even taking place is money. So, will it be worth it?"

The Olympics involve 33 competitions and 339 events, held across 42 venues. So far only about 5.6% of the Japanese population are fully vaccinated.

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