National

Tech-shy cybersecurity and Olympics minister Yoshitaka Sakurada confesses that he can't speak English either

JIJI

Yoshitaka Sakurada, minister for both cybersecurity and the 2020 Tokyo Olympics and Paralympics, who recently made headlines around the world by admitting that he cannot use a personal computer, made a new confession on Thursday: He is unable to speak English.

“There are two things that I’ve been feeling ashamed of since I became a lawmaker — not being able to use a PC and not being able to speak English,” he said at an event in Tokyo introducing efforts to offer multilingual services during the quadrennial sporting events.

“I’ll give up on becoming prime minister because I can’t speak English,” he said, making participants laugh.

Citing, for example, a summit of the Group of Seven major industrial countries, Sakurada said: “The seven leaders are lined up, with no interpreter in between. Those aspiring to become prime minister (of Japan) have to be able to speak English.”

Asked by reporters for comments on the various technologies and products showcased at the event, Sakurada said they can cover his “weakest points.”

“If technologies become more advanced, the world will be more enjoyable for those who are not good at foreign languages,” Sakurada said.