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Seiko Hashimoto becomes the new patron of the Tokyo Olympics

Seiko Hashimoto becomes the new patron of the Tokyo Olympics

The former Japanese Minister of the Olympic and Paralympic Games has been appointed to succeed Yoshiro Mori, forced to resign after sexist remarks.

Seiko Hashimoto is taking orders from this Thursday Tokyo Olympics, which are scheduled to run from July 23 to August 8. She resigned from her post of Japanese Minister for the Olympic and Paralympic Games earlier today, confirming the option taken by an eight-person consultation committee (four men and four women). This one has set their sights on this former Olympic medalist in speed skating, after three consultation meetings, the last of which, Thursday, was decisive.

Seiko, the “Olympic flame”

The name of Seiko Hashimoto had already been put forward with insistence. The person concerned, member of the LDP, the conservative party of the Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga, has so far been reluctant to leave his ministerial post. Seiko Hashimoto, however, has changed her mind and is now responsible for making the Tokyo Olympics and Paralympics “a success”, despite the coronavirus health crisis and its consequences.


“The members of the selection panel were not mistaken: she ticks all the boxes.”

Seiko Hashimoto was born just five days before the opening of the 1964 Tokyo Games. Her first name, Seiko, is spelled with the same first character, “seika”, that the Olympic flame in Japanese. Two symbols highlighted to raise the confidence level of the Japanese, which fell very low, for the Olympics postponed for a year last year.

The importance of gender equality

Olympic medalist in speed skating at the Albertville Games in 1992, Seiko Hashimoto for a long time led a dual sports career, skating in winter, cycling in summer. She has to her credit four participations in the Winter Games (Sarajevo 1984, Calgary 1988, Albertville 1992 and Lillehammer 1994), and three editions of the Summer Games (Seoul 1988, Barcelona 1992, Atlanta 1996).

“The members of the selection panel were not mistaken: she ticks all the boxes. An international profile, knowledge of the Olympic and Paralympic Games, a solid political network and, now mandatory, a ‘deep understanding’ of gender equality. Since 2019, Seiko Hashimoto had added a second ministerial term, the Olympic Games, to her function of Minister in charge of the emancipation of women and gender equality, ”analyzes the specialized site for Olympic affairs, Francsjeux.com.

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