JOC Chief Takeda Offers to Step Down amid Bribery Allegations

Sports Society

Tokyo, March 19 (Jiji Press)--Japanese Olympic Committee President Tsunekazu Takeda said Tuesday that he will step down at the end of his current term in June, at a time when he is under French investigation for bribery allegations linked to Tokyo's successful bid for the 2020 Olympics and Paralympics.

At a meeting of JOC executives in Tokyo, Takeda, 71, claimed that the main reason for his resignation is to allow young leaders to open up a new era through the Tokyo Games.

Takeda told a press conference later in the day that he will also resign as a member of the International Olympic Committee, while stressing that the bribery probe is not a reason for him to leave office.

"I haven't committed any wrongdoing," said Takeda. "I'll continue to make efforts to prove my innocence."

At the center of the bribery allegations is the payment in 2013 of about 220 million yen from Tokyo's then bidding committee, headed by Takeda, to a Singapore-based consulting firm linked to a son of an IOC member from Senegal.

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press