Emmet vows to stay in Japan

A DUNDALK man who is living in Japan has vowed to stay despite warnings from the Irish government that Irish citizens should leave Tokyo and the north-east of the country.

A DUNDALK man who is living in Japan has vowed to stay despite warnings from the Irish government that Irish citizens should leave Tokyo and the north-east of the country.

Emmet Agnew from Doylesfort Road told The Dundalk Democrat that he is going to “stay put” despite nuclear radiation fears following a devasating earthquake and tsunami.

The 32-year-old English teacher is based in Hokkaido, about 700km north of the most-severely hit areas around Sendai, on the east coast of Japanese mainland Honshu.

“The earthquake was scary but the tsunami just hit us a small bit. We were lucky in that we had a warning. Two thousand people had to be evacuated from my city but where I am, I’m up high,” he said.

“My wife, Megumi, is from here. My work is here. My life is over here so I’m not going to leave. There have been a few aftershocks in Japan; we only had a slight one thank God.

“There are a lot of different comments about the situation in the nuclear power plant. The Japanese government doesn’t want to put the country in a panic. They are close to restoring power to the cooling systems, so we are getting some positive news but I know we are not out of the woods yet.”

Emmet added: “All of my students are worried about the radiation but people are trying to get on with it. We just have to wait and see. I have been bombarded with emails from people who are worried about me. I’m still in shock but I’m okay. We just have to get over the next few weeks.”