Latest News

Monday, 21st May 2012
In General Japan News,

Fukuoka mayor orders officials on the wagon

Officials working for the city of Fukuoka in Japan have been ordered to quit drinking alcohol for a month as the mayor looks to set an example after drink-fuelled scandals hit authorities.

Two controversies involving civic workers forced mayor Soichiro Takashima into the drastic action and he called an emergency meeting of senior officials today (May 21st) to announce his mandate.

All city workers are now banned from drinking alcohol until June 20th and it is expected that the city's Municipal Board of Education will follow suit, the Mainichi Daily reported.

How the decree will be enforced remains to be seen, but authorities say that all employees must refrain from drinking both in public and private.

Any employees whose job involves attending events where booze may be consumed have been told not to drink alcohol either.

The move follows the arrest a fireman from the Fukuoka City Fire Department in February after he allegedly stole a vehicle while under the influence.

Last month, an elementary school vice principal was caught drink driving.

Announcing his decision to ban alcohol consumption, Mayor Takashima told Mainichi reporters that it was "shock therapy to reform the consciousness of city officials".

"We want to restore citizens' trust by changing the bad climate of drinking over the years and transforming us into a brand new City Hall," he said.

The city, which is the capital of the Fukuoka Prefecture on Kyushu Island in the south-west of Japan, is taking further action to prevent such issues happening again.

All civic staff will be asked to reiterate their commitment by reciting the city's pledge of allegiance to citizens when attending at meetings. A mission statement is also being drawn up that staff will have to sign.

Fukuokoa is home to the Mongolian Invasions Historical Museum, which has an incredible collection of Japanese and Mongolian armour from as far back as the 13th century.

Written by Mark Smith

Related news stories:
Teen stuns tennis world (1st September 2008)