A senior nuclear adviser to Japanese Prime Minister Naoto Kan submitted his resignation on Friday, saying the government had ignored his advice and failed to follow the law.
Toshiso Kosako, a Tokyo University professor who was named last month as an advisor to Kan, said the government had only taken ad hoc measures to contain the crisis at the crippled Fukushima nuclear power plant.
In a tearful press conference, he said the government and its commissions had taken “flexible approaches” to existing laws and regulations, and ignored his advice.
I cannot help but to think (the prime minister’s office and other agencies) are only taking stopgap measures… and delaying the end” of the nuclear crisis, he told reporters.
Tokyo officials had drafted measures to deal with the accident that were not in strict accordance with the law, and the decision-making process had been unclear, he said.
There is no point for me to be here,” as the Kan administration had failed to listen to him, said Kosako, an expert on radiation safety.
The government has belittled laws and taken measures only for the present moment, resulting in delays in bringing the situation under control,” Toshiso Kosako, professor on antiradiation safety measures at the University of Tokyo’s graduate school, told a news conference.
After the March 11 quake and tsunami triggered the country’s worst nuclear accident, Kosako assumed the post on March 16 with the duty of advising Kan on matters related to nuclear power plants and radiation.
It is extremely rare for an intellectual adviser appointed by the prime minister to resign in protest at measures the government has taken.
He told the news conference at the Diet building it is problematic for the government to have delayed the release of forecasts on the spread of radiation from the Fukushima plant, done by the Nuclear Safety Technology Center’s computer system, called the System for Prediction of Environmental Emergency Dose Information, or SPEEDI.
He also blasted the government for hiking the upper limit for emergency workers seeking to bring the crippled plant under control to 250 millisieverts from 100 millisieverts after the crisis broke out.
“The prime minister’s office and administrative organizations have made impromptu policy decisions, like playing a whack-a-mole game, ignoring proper procedures,” the radiation expert said.
He also urged the government to stiffen guidelines on upper limits on radiation levels the education ministry recently announced as allowable levels for primary school grounds in Fukushima Prefecture, where the radiation-leaking plant is located.
The guidelines announced by the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology “are inconsistent with internationally commonsensical figures and they were determined by the administration to serve its interests,” he said.