Freedom of speech, save Tanemaki to save the children!
"Tanemaki Journal", radio news broadcasting by MBS, is facing a concern of being shut down in this autumn. This radio station has taken the incident at Fukushima Daiichi very seriously and its objective and critical reports and evaluations of those issues around nuclear power were highly rated to be a spectacular work in the post Fukushima era. Since the 3.11 accident, Tanekmaki Journal invited Hiroaki Koide, who is a lecturer of Kyoto University Research Reactor Institute and who had warned the possibility of nuclear crisis at these plants for over 40 years, to their shows as a guest commentator for almost everyday.
Despite the definite popularity and privilege of Tanemaki Journal, it is said that the radio station is facing a likelihood of being shut down in this autumn. Some critics said 'the TV station is claiming they are setting up a new radio programme instead of Tanemaki Journal. However, the true reason for shutting down Tanemaki Journal is attributed to a pressure from KEPCO, the electricity company in Kansai region and a large sponsor of the TV station. The TV station should have sought to avoid the people's complaint in case they dismiss Hioraki Koide himself. Instead, they decided to shut down the radio station'.
Even one and half years after the 3.11 accident, Hiroaki Koide still appears on Tanemaki Journal twice a week, and for a few months after the 3.11 accident he was featured on the show almost daily. He recently set up a microphone at home and started to show up on Tanemaki via online TV camera. Hiroaki Koide commented that 'I suggested that Tanemaki Journal reduce my appearances on the radio since the situation at Fukushima Daiich is not so severe that I should report every day. Nevertheless, the information provided by the government and TEPCO is still very doubtful, so that Tanemaki Journal plays an important role as a source of accurate reports and fair discussion. I am very concerned for the future without Tanemaki Journal'. Moreover, he commented regarding pressure from KEPCO that 'I am not surprised at all. Mass media has been in league with the government and the electricity company. The facts suggest Japanese media has been provided with enormous amount of money and been promoting nuclear power without any doubt. Their constitutions will never change as long as they are given money. I am not particularly surprised by that'.
Weekly Asahi EX Digital 17, 08, 2012