Tokyo 2016 To Ask For Royal Help

AFP reports Tokyo Governor Shintaro Ishihara said Tokyo is asking Japan’s Crown Prince Naruhito and Princess Masako to help in its bid to host the 2016 Summer Olympic Games, matching stars lined up by other candidate cities.

Ishihara, head of Tokyo 2016 said, “it will be absolutely necessary to solicit kind help from the imperial family for the benefit of the Japanese people and for the history of Japan. We plan to make a formal request through the government in the days ahead”, adding that it might be too unconventional to ask Emperor Akihito and Empress Michiko to undertake the role.

Ishihara said it would ask the prince to present Tokyo’s bid to around 100 International Olympic Committee (IOC) members on October 1, the day before the meeting in Copenhagen when the 2016 bid city will be elected.

Ishihara said he had not looked for the support of a prominent political figure because it was uncertain who would head Japan’s government in October. He said, “there has been a succession of prime ministers in recent years but I’m not sure if they were material or figures who can symbolize Japan”.