Tokyo Olympics president Yoshiro Mori causes stir with sexist comments

Clay Curtis
February 4, 2021

"When one person raises a hand, others think they need to speak up as well". For that, I feel deep remorse and I would like to retract my remarks.

"When you increase the number of female executive members, if their speaking time isn't restricted to a certain extent, they have difficulty finishing, which is annoying". "I'm not saying who that is", he said.

An official for the Tokyo 2020 Organising Committee said it was important to ensure that the local medical system and the Olympics were both sustainable.

Tokyo 2020 Organizing Committee President Yoshiro Mori.

Yet by Thursday afternoon, Mori seemed comfortable in his position, even as calls for his resignation dominated Twitter here.

However, Kyodo News reported that Mori also praised the caliber of the seven women now sitting on the 35-member board, saying many had previously served in sporting leagues and had valuable worldwide experience.

"It was thoughtless. I'd like to apologise", he added. By subscribing, you can help us get the story right.

There has been dismay in Japan that no one spoke up in the meeting on Wednesday to express outrage at Mori's comments.

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The JOC itself decided past year to aim for more than 40 percent of female members at the board, but as of November, there are just five women among the board's 24 members.

"Gender equality and consideration for people with disabilities were supposed to be a given for the Tokyo Games", Yamaguchi said.

"It's shameful, ' she added, pointing out the Olympic Charter's commitment to 'practising sport, without discrimination of any kind".

Japan has faced criticism for its gender equality efforts as it ranks 121 out of 153 nations surveyed in the 2020 global gender gap report of the World Economic Forum.

About 80% of Japanese in polls say the Games should be postponed or canceled in the midst of the pandemic. Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga yesterday extended Japan's state of emergency until early March, although the country has seen relatively few coronavirus cases compared to many countries, with 400,000 total cases and 6,000 deaths.

Olympics organisers this week unveiled the first of a series of "playbooks" aimed at holding the Games safely, warning that rule breakers could be kicked out.

The nationwide Olympic torch relay is still due to begin on March 25, with the opening ceremony on July 23.

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