Nagasaki Prefecture's Governor, Kengo Oishi, has stirred controversy as he chose to skip a crucial work meeting earlier this year to watch a football match featuring Cristiano Ronaldo in Osaka.
In a questionable move, Oishi travelled to Osaka to witness Ronaldo's Al Nassr FC summer friendly clash with Paris Saint-Germain in Osaka on July 25.
Oishi personally footed the bill for the match tickets but the prefectural government covered his travel and accommodation expenses.
Oishi's choice has caused controversy because he was not present at a crucial conference where issues related to global warming, Japan's dropping birth rate, and the shrinking rural population were discussed.
Meeting Missed: Absence from Key Discussions
Oishi's absence at the July 25-26 prefectural leaders meeting in Yamanashi raised concerns.
The meeting, focusing on addressing the nation's declining birth rate, rural population contraction, and the repercussions of global warming, had Oishi represented by the deputy governor.
Busy Tokyo Day Precedes Ronaldo Excursion
Prior to his venture to Osaka, Oishi participated in budget discussions in Tokyo on the first day of the conference. Later that evening, he headed to Osaka for the football match.
The following day, Oishi engaged with local businesses before attending an event organized by Ronaldo's representatives. At the event, he extended an invitation to Ronaldo to promote Nagasaki Prefecture, emphasizing its historical ties to Portugal dating back to the mid-1500s. However, local officials stated that no official response was received.
Oishi's Political Journey
Oishi gained prominence in February the previous year when, at the age of 39, he ran as an independent candidate against a three-term incumbent backed by the ruling Liberal Democratic Party (LDP). Upon winning, he became the youngest governor in Japan.
During his acceptance speech, Oishi pledged to shape the future of Nagasaki Prefecture, ensuring that all generations could live without concerns. However, his recent actions have sparked criticism and questions about his commitment to fulfilling that promise.