The general public are unwanted - ethecon are critical of TEPCO’s blockade attitude

One year after the onset of the nuclear desaster in Fukushima we have yet to see any substantial consequences dealt to the people responsible for this maximum credible accident. A few managers were replaced by the operating company TEPCO. However, there is no talk of criminal charges. Now the company is even trying to make a secret of the date of their upcoming shareholders’ meeting – obviously this is an attempt to make any protest difficult.

In recent years, TEPCO company used to hold their annual general meeting in late June. Last year it took place on 28th June.

The 2011 general meeting was overshadowed by massive public protest. Apparently, the intention is to prevent this by all means in 2012. So far, TEPCO have not announced the exact date of their general meeting. ethecon – The Ethics & Economy Foundation – asked the company’s public relations department point blank. They claimed that it was still uncertain whether or not the general meeting would to take place and at what time. According to ethecon’s enquiries, not even international banks have received information about the exact date of the meeting.

This is an intentional misinformation because obviously major Japanese shareholders still assume the general meeting is going to take place in late June (source: CleanBiz Asia). On that occasion, some of them intend to face the TEPCO executives with a great number of demands concerning savings and improved management transparency (source: Japan Times). Besides, there is talk about the company’s nationalization. In July, TEPCO will presumably receive government subsidies to the amount of one Trillion Yen (12 Billion Dollars). In return, the government will receive shares which are not traded in the stock exchange amounting to more than 50 percent of the voting stock (source: Nikkei.com).

“TEPCO’s behaviour is an international scandal” according to ethecon chairman Axel Köhler-Schnura. “Even the banks we asked confirmed that they have never seen anything like this.” For him it creates the impression that TEPCO does not want small shareholders and the media to be present at the general meeting. – And what is most important, that TEPCO are trying to mislead any protest action on the occasion of their general meeting announced by numerous organisations from Japan and elsewhere. ethecon are among them.

Last November Foundation ethecon castigated chairman Tsunehisa Katsumata, former president Masataka Shimizu und current president Toshio Nishizawa as well as the major shareholders of the energy provider TEPCO with the International ethecon Black Planet Award 2011. It is planned to present the actual award to the criticized executives in Tokyo during international protest actions this year in June in Japan.

A comprehensive justification statement for the choice of the Internationalen Black Planet Award 2011 recipients may be found in the dossier on TEPCO in the download section of the website www.ethecon.org. A summary is in the Open Letter.

Foundation ethecon is above all known through the annual bestowal of its International ethecon Blue/ Black Planet Awards in Berlin. With its positive prizes ethecon honoured in past years Diane Wilson/USA (2006), Vandana Shiva/India (2007), José Abreu und Hugo Chávez/Venezuela (2008), Uri Avnery/Israel (2009), Elias Bierdel/Austria (2010) as well as Angela Davis/USA (2011). The censure awards went to the owners, shareholders and executive management of the following companies: Monsanto/USA (2006), Nestlé/Switzerland(2007), Blackwater (Xe)/USA (2008), Formosa Plastics Group/Taiwan (2009), BP/Great Britain (2010) and TEPCO/Japan (2011).

In contrast to many corporate, family, church, political and state foundations, ethecon is one of the few foundations empowered by ordinary citizens. There are currently 30 endowment contributors. Following the credo „for a world without exploitation and oppression“, it see its mission in its responsibility toward coming generations. The young foundation is financed through endowment contributions, donations and sustaining memberships.

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