Residents of Frankfurt, Germany, boo them down if you see them in your football stadium.
A delegation from Yokohama City, where kindergarteners and small school children were fed with radioactive cesium beef, where a significant amount of radioactive strontium was found, along with high level of radioactive cesium, on top of an apartment building, where school teachers are forcing pupils to clean the school yards of radioactive sludge and radioactive fallen leaves, are going to Frankfurt, Germany.
Why? To sign a sister city agreement with Frankfurt, and to play football (soccer).
For this important trip, the city will spend 30,000,000 yen (US$393,000) of tax money from the Yokohama residents, many of whom are totally incensed. I think the cost to fly the mayor and her staff is separate, and it is 5 million yen (US$65,470).
It is nothing compared to what the US president and his family spend on their numerous trips, but in Yokohama City that's a lot of money that the residents rather see spent on testing radiation in food or decontaminating the high radiation locations.
Instead, they are set on going to Frankfurt to play football to strengthen the ties with the sister city.
Signing the sister city agreement could have been done when the mayor of Frankfurt visited Yokohama a short while ago. But no, this mayor and her assemblymen (ruling coalition members of course) have to fly to Frankfurt on a business class (which is another point that irks Yokohama citizens).
One 38-year old assemblyman said this on his tweet, as irate citizens sent him tweets criticizing the trip and his insistence on flying business class:
There is no need to change from business class. What's more important is what kind of result I will get from the trip, and whether it will have added to the city's governance. If you don't think much of it, then you can choose not to elect me. That's the power of the voters.
In another tweet, he said "I will go no matter what you (taxpayers) say".
According to Tokyo Shinbun's article (10/13/2011), the trip will be from November 4 to 19. After playing football in Frankfurt, the 24-person delegation will split into 4 groups, and each group will visit different countries that include other European countries, South Africa, Turkey, Brazil, and the US.
An accident should never derail the set schedule, whether that is the school yard cleanup or the overseas trip by the major and her entourage.