Tokyo 2020 Olympic committee to hold special meeting over Mori’s comments as volunteers withdraw help

02/09/2021

Tokyo, Feb. 9: The Tokyo 2020 Olympic Organising Committee is set to convene a special board meeting as early as Friday after the outcry over committee president Yoshiro Mori’s sexist comments, public broadcaster NHK reported on Tuesday.

There are no plans to discuss Mori’s resignation at the meeting but he could face a barrage of criticism over his comments, Nikkan Sports said in a separate report.

Mori has come under fire for saying last week that meetings with female participants take a long time, adding that they “get competitive” with each other. He apologised and retracted his comments, but the public’s outrage appears far from assuaged.

Following Mori’s remarks, about 440 Games volunteers have quit and local organisers have received more than 5,500 complaints, according to local media.

“We are taking this very seriously,” said Olympic Minister Seiko Hashimoto on Tuesday morning when asked about the resignation of the volunteers.

Daichi Oyama (28), who withdrew from volunteering because of coronavirus concerns, said of Mori that “if every time he says something things get worse, he should quit....” “It wasn’t just Japanese news, all the world heard what he said and there’s opposition being raised. It’s a very embarrassing thing for Japan,” he said.

But some 80,000 people are signed up to help the Summer Games, and many others are still staying on.

“That was definitely a gaffe, but Mori is old...and I think that people of that age have a tendency to look down on women, it’s a factor of their age,” said Misako Yoshizawa (70), who teaches English part-time in Saitama prefecture and whose plans to volunteer haven’t changed despite the outcry.

“Mori is Mori, I’m not his volunteer. I’m a volunteer working to carry out the Tokyo Olympics,” she added.

An online petition seeking action against Mori has garnered 1,40,000 signatures so far, and an editorial published on Tuesday in the daily Mainichi has called on Mori to resign.

“This is not an issue that can be closed with a retraction or an apology” the editorial read.

Sponsors have also distanced themselves. Insurance company Nippon Life Insurance Company told the daily Asahi that they were “disappointed” with the remarks, and have made that clear to the organising committee.

Hiroaki Nakanishi, chairman of the influential business lobby Keidanren, initially refrained from commenting but later said: “I feel that that’s what some people are really thinking in Japan” and that “social media is terrifying” given how rapidly comments are shared and spread online.

When asked to clarify what he meant, Nakanishi said it was customary in Japan to differentiate between men and women but that thinking was outdated, according to TV Asahi.

But the comment was trending on social media by Monday morning, with people taking to Twitter express frustrations over Nakanishi’s comments as well.

“He made a sweeping statement about Japan but I think this is what the chairman himself is thinking. He’s the same as president Mori in his inability to listen to his critics,” said one Twitter user.-Agencies

Related News

Malinga is world’s best yorker bowler, says Bumrah

New Delhi, June 5: India’s premier pacer Jasprit Bumrah has described Lasith Malinga as the “best yorker bowler in the world” and said the veteran Sri Lankan has used his mastery over the delivery for a very long period of time in international cricket. “Malinga is the best yorker bowler…

English Premier League teams prepare for restart with practice games

London, June 7: Manchester United, Chelsea and Arsenal were among the clubs who stepped up their preparations for the Premier League's return by holding practice matches. Clubs are attempting to build up players' fitness as well as get used to playing without fans before the league resumes on June 17…

ICC ratifies interim ban on saliva on ball

London, June 10: Players will be banned from the age-old technique of using saliva to shine a ball when cricket emerges from the shutdown caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, the International Cricket Council (ICC) said on Tuesday. Several other interim measures designed to ensure the safety of players and match…

Qatar 2022 World Cup stadium workers went months without pay, says Amnesty

Dubai, June 11: A Qatari company helping build a 2022 World Cup stadium has been banned from the event's projects after its labourers went unpaid for months, organisers said on Thursday, in a case Amnesty International said showed inadequate worker welfare standards. Around 100 employees of a Qatari subcontractor, Qatar…

Pak ex-cricketer Shahid Afridi tests positive for coronavirus, says 'need prayers for speedy recovery'

Karachi, June 13: Former Pakistan captain Shahid Afridi on Saturday said he has tested positive for COVID-19, becoming the first high-profile cricketer to be infected with the deadly virus. "I've been feeling unwell since Thursday; my body had been aching badly. I've been tested and unfortunately I'm COVID-19 positive. Need…

Gary Kirsten recalls how he landed India coach's job in 7 minutes

New Delhi, June 15: He was never interested in coaching neither did he apply for the job, but it took exactly seven minutes for Gary Kirsten to land the high-profile India coach's job back in 2007, a process set in motion by the great Sunil Gavaskar. Speaking on the 'Cricket…

Video

Find Us on Facebook

From Social