(Tokyo) Tokyo Olympics officials will meet to discuss their response to sexist comments made last week by the chairman of the organizing committee, which prompted hundreds of volunteers to resign, media reported on Tuesday.
Gaff-prone 83-year-old Yoshiro Mori’s remarks about overly talkative women at meetings have sparked outrage in Japan and abroad.
The former Japanese prime minister apologized on Thursday, but ruled out resigning, and the International Olympic Committee (IOC) supported him, considering that the case was closed.
The Tokyo-2020 organizing committee plans to meet later this week to raise the issue and discuss its response, Kyodo news agency and private broadcaster FNN reported on Tuesday.
About 390 Olympic and Paralympic Games volunteers, out of some 80,000 people recruited in all, threw in the towel after Mr. Mori’s remarks, according to local media citing the organizing committee.
He received more than 4,500 emails and calls about the Tokyo-2020 boss’s statements, and two people gave up participating in the Olympic torch relay, according to Kyodo.
The organizers could not be contacted immediately to react to this information.
Mr. Mori apologized Thursday at a press conference in which he appeared on the defensive, saying he wanted to withdraw his comments while awkwardly explaining that he did not speak “often with women lately”.
But his apologies did not calm the anger of certain political and sports leaders, as well as sportsmen and volunteers involved in the preparation of the Olympics.
“I stayed silent,” because such comments “should not be allowed,” Tokyo Governor Yuriko Koike said on Friday.
Japanese tennis star Naomi Osaka said on Saturday that the remarks came from an “ignorant” person.