Earlier this month, 56-year-old Sakura Wars co-creator Hiroji Oji was spotted staying over at 22-year-old AKB48 singer Sayaka Akimoto's residence. The scandal that ensued made the papers and the morning talk shows.
Both denied that there was any hanky panky. The tabloid that broke the story, however, claimed that the lights in Akimoto's abode were quickly turned off upon arrival.
For more information as to why this is a big deal in the idol world, please refer to this post.
Sayaka takes full responsibility for the ensuing scandal. She says that since Oji is a stage director that she respects, she has asked for his help regarding a theatrical performance since summer.
"I've been to his house, and he has been to my house," Sayaka explains. "I did not think anything of it, because Hiroi-san lives with his daughter, and I live with Ayaka Umeda. Moreover, since Hiroi-san is older than my father, I have never thought of him as a guy."
Ayaka Umeda is a fellow AKB48 member.
The day that Oji slept over, Sayaka says that he fell asleep while discussing acting, so she and Umeda decided to let him sleep.
"I am woeful that it sounds like I'm making excuses. I'm sorry for all the fans who support me, and also for AKB members... I'm sorry," she adds. "This became such a big issue, and it is all my fault."
AKB48 is divided in to three separate teams (A team, K team and B team). Being the team captain is one of the highest positions in the group, and Sayaka is forfeiting her role in K team. "I should be the role model for other members, but I'm not qualified as a captain anymore," she explains. "Therefore, I will resign as the captain of team K."
Shame she can't be captain of our team K.