Gaborone — International Working Group (IWG) on Women and Sport executive board member, Game Mothibi says remarks by the head of the Tokyo Olympics organising committee, Yoshiro Mori are disappointing and belittling women.
Mothibi called for Mori to resign after he said “when you increase the number of female executive members, if their speaking time isn’t restricted to a certain extent, they have difficulty finishing, which is annoying.”
She said he leads a committee of 24 members, five of whom were women. She said although he retracted his statement, different women in sport were still calling for his resignation.
Mothibi, who is also a board chairperson for Africa Sport Venture Group, said it was unfortunate for such remarks to come from a high profile sport leader who was at the helm of world leading sport competitions.
She said they expected better from leaders, and if they did not have anything good to say about women, they might as well step down.
“We cannot have such leaders who make such utterances and yet he represents a sport body which is working around the clock to realise gender equality in sport,” she said.
Mothibi said 48.8 per cent of participants at Tokyo 2020 were expected to be women, adding that Japan had women athletes, coaches, sport administrators and officials as well in their boards. “Therefore, for the former prime minister to make such a statement was insulting to all women in Japan sport, and to all women around the world, especially that the statement was generalising.”
She said Mori refused to resign even when his own wife and daughter made him realise how wrong the statement was, adding that the man was not new to controversy and stepping down would send a strong message that “we want to achieve gender equality in sport and at all levels.
Such sexist statements should even be banned in sport just like doping. They are damaging.” she stressed.
Mothibi said they would wait to see how the IOC family and the Japanese government would deal with Mori, adding that his comments were baseless and not supported by any empirical evidence.
She said even Forbes shared research on how men were more competitive and talk more in meetings than women, especially that numbers always favoured them.
Meanwhile, more than 110 000 people around the world have signed a petition seeking that action be taken against Mori.
Source : BOPA