Japanese Olympic Committee (JOC) President Tsunekazu Takeda said yesterday he will resign in June amid an alleged bribery case related to the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.
Takeda also said he will quit the International Olympic Committee (IOC) where he is the marketing chief. His resignation comes less than 500 days before the opening of the 2020 Games. French prosecutors are looking at two payments totaling $2 million made by Japan's bid committee in 2013 to Black Tidings, a Singapore company. They suspect the money was used to buy votes that enabled Tokyo to win the bid to host the Olympics.
The 71-year-old, however, has denied all allegations against him. The IOC expressed concerns that the scandal could undermine the image of the Tokyo Games and asked the JOC to solve the issue in a timely manner, Kyodo News agency reported, citing unnamed sources. At a news conference in January, Takeda insisted he was innocent and then left the room after speaking for only seven minutes without taking any questions.