Tokyo Games exec quits

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    TOKYO. — Tokyo Olympics creative head Hiroshi Sasaki said he has resigned after making a derogatory comment about a popular female Japanese entertainer, in the latest controversy over insensitive remarks towards women to hit Games organizers.

    Sasaki, who was the head creative director for the opening and closing ceremonies at this year’s Games, said he had told a planning group through a group chat that Naomi Watanabe could play a role as an “Olympig”.

    “There was a very inappropriate expression in my ideas and remarks,” Sasaki said in a statement issued through Games organisers in the early hours of Thursday. “I sincerely apologies to her and people who have felt discomfort with such contents.”

    Sasaki said he had told Tokyo 2020 President Seiko Hashimoto late on Wednesday evening that he was stepping down.

    Hashimoto and Tokyo 2020 CEO Toshiro Muto plan to address the matter at a news conference on Thursday, organizers said.

    Sasaki’s resignation came swiftly after weekly magazine Shukan Bunshun reported his remarks on Wednesday.

    Last month, Yoshiro Mori stepped down from his role as president of the Tokyo 2020 organizing committee after causing a furor with sexist remarks when he said women talk too much.