TOKYO. — The president of the Tokyo 2020 Olympics organizing committee, Yoshiro Mori, is set to step down over sexist remarks, media reported on Thursday, a resignation likely to raise new doubts over the viability of holding the Games later this year.
The former prime minister made the remark— that women talk too much— at a Japanese Olympic Committee board meeting early this month, setting off a storm of criticism at home and abroad.
The Fuji News Network and public broadcaster NHK reported that Mori, 83, was set to resign. The Mainichi newspaper said he was expected to express his intention to go on Friday, when executive members of the Tokyo Olympics board are due to meet to discuss his sexist remark.
Mori was not immediately available for comment. A spokesman for the organizing committee declined comment.
The TBS broadcaster TBS reported that former Japan Football Association president and mayor of the Olympics village, Saburo Kawabuchi, would replace Mori.
Mori retracted his comment about women at a hastily called news conference on Feb. 4, acknowledging it was inappropriate and against the Olympic spirit.
But he declined, at that time, to resign.
Pressed on whether he really thought women talked too much, Mori said: “I don’t listen to women that much lately, so I don’t know”.
Mori served as prime minister for a gaffe-plagued year from April 2000. – Reuters