Tokyo 2020 organising committee president Yoshiro Mori announced his resignation on Friday due to protests over his sexist remarks about women last week.
The 83-year-old former Japanese prime minister made the announcement at a special meeting of its executive members, reports Xinhua news agency.
He told the meeting that his inappropriate remarks have caused chaos and that he wishes to “resign as president as of today”.
Mori, who was appointed to head the Olympic organising committee in January 2014, said on February 3 at a meeting of the Japanese Olympic Committee, “Women have a strong sense of rivalry… if one female member raises her hand to speak, everyone will think they need to say something too.”
He made an apology at a news conference afterward but protests over these remarks have shown no sign of abating in the past week.
Former head of Japanese Football Association Kaburo Kawabuchi has been reported to take over but the 84-year-old is considering not accepting the offer in what would be a sharp turnaround from his comments the previous day, the Kyodo news agency said.
The International Olympic Committee (IOC) said in its new statement on Tuesday that Mori’s remarks are “absolutely inappropriate and in contradiction to the IOC’s commitments and the reforms of its Olympic Agenda 2020”.