Last night’s epsisode of Utacon featured peformances by Nogizaka46, May J., Sayuri Ishikawa, and Mizumori Kaori, among others. Jaejoong also performed on the show last night. Today, he made a post on Instagram saying that he was hospitalized with the novel coronavirus COVID-19. The post read:
“I have been infected with COVID-19. It is a result of my negligence, ignoring the cautionary words shared by the government and those around me.
A person’s individual actions can have such a big impact on society as a whole. I am so sorry to those who may have been infected because of me.
My foolish judgment to live as though it couldn’t happen to me is why I am like this today. I am currently hospitalized. I am reflecting on my past a lot and feeling both grateful and sorry.
There are many things I want to say. There are many people I want to see so much.“
Jaejoong later edited the now-deleted post to say it was an April Fools’ Day joke.
His edited post read:
“What if the people we love, someone precious to us, contracted the virus?
It’s such a heart-wrenching thing to think about.
Despite this, so many people walk the streets and live their lives without their guards up, ignoring it… and thinking it won’t happen to them, and it makes me so worried that my family and friends might get sick. Believing that we and the people around us will be safe will end up making us and everything around us sick.
Currently, a growing number of my acquaintances and industry representatives are being tested positive. It is not something that is far away.
When negligence turns a sad premonition into reality, it’s not something that we can simply end by wiping our tears away.
Staying on alert right now.. That is what I say to myself again and again.
Although this did go quite far for April Fool’s Day, so many people worried about me in a short span of time.
Oh… and I don’t think of this as an April Fool’s joke. My family and my friends are getting sick.. and dying.. It’s never!! just someone else’s problem. I wanted to tell you that protecting myself is protecting the precious people around us.
I will accept all punishment I receive from this post. I hope all of you are healthy.”
The punishment is probably his career in Japan, the only place that still cared about him, being over. Check out his final peformance on Japanese TV here!