Tokyo Olympics Scandal Makes Sapporo Bid “Difficult”

A corruption scandal surrounding last year’s Tokyo Games has damaged Japan’s bid to host the 2030 Winter Olympics, a top local official warned. But Hokkaido governor Naomichi Suzuki believes an investigation into allegations of bribery in the selection of Tokyo Games sponsors is threatening to derail Sapporo’s bid.

“When you consider the series of problems related to the Tokyo Olympics, it will be difficult to build momentum with things as they are,” Suzuki said.

“I want the truth to come out as soon as possible. Unless we have thorough discussions and counter-measures to gain people’s understanding, we won’t be able to take things forward.”

As part of their investigation, Japanese police arrested Haruyuki Takahashi, a former Tokyo Games executive, on suspicion of taking bribes in return for helping companies become official event sponsors.

The scandal has also engulfed the company that produced soft toys for the Games mascots, as well as a suit retailer, a publishing firm, and major advertising agencies.

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