Hey! Say! JUMP apologizes for their member's smoking scandal
On August 7th, popular idol group Hey! Say! JUMP made an appearance at the Tokyo Dome City Hall for their "SUMMARY 2011" show. Prior to their show, however, the nine members of the group held a press conference to apologize for Morimoto Ryutaro's recent smoking scandal. Morimoto, whose entertainment activities have been temporarily suspended, was named as 'Member A' in Japanese media reports due to his status as a minor - he is 16 years old.
The remaining Hey! Say! JUMP members apologized by saying, "We want to apologize for breaking our fans' dreams. We are reflecting on what happened deeply".
This is the first time that the remaining nine members of Hey! Say! JUMP made a group appearance in front of the press after the scandal was revealed back in June. An incriminating photo was published in a weekly magazine, and after confirming that it did indeed show a member of Hey! Say! JUMP, their agency Johnny's Entertainment put a hold on his activities.
Eldest member Yabu Kota quietly said, "Although it is sudden, we'd like to take the time to apologize. Recently, one of our members was caught smoking while still being a minor and has caused trouble to many people. We'd like to apologize for causing trouble for everyone, and for worrying our fans." With these heavy words, the members all bowed deeply.
Yabu continued, "Right now, I am sure that he is reflecting deeply on the importance of meeting the fans and being able to work". Remarking that he also talked to Morimoto on the phone recently, Yabu revealed, "He told me that he'll 'concentrate on [his] studies' so I told him that I wanted him to work hard on whatever he can do right now."
Throughout the press conference, Hey! Say! JUMP bowed in apology four times. Yabu once again expressed, "We're supported by so many fans, and we've been active with the goal of giving everyone a dream. We would like to apologize for breaking that dream."
Johnny Kitagawa also remarked, "He has to atone for his mistake by accepting this punishment", and did not comment on Morimoto's further activities or plans.
Right now, Hey! Say! JUMP is working hard with the nine remaining members they have. With their new show, 'SUMMARY' they showed a much more powerful and exciting stage than they did last year, flying freely around the audience and showing a variety of acrobatic stunts, one for which they had to endure two months of tough training.
Hey! Say! JUMP has added performances in Osaka Kyocera Dome and another in Tokyo Dome for September. The nine members commented, "We want to work hard to regain everyone's trust and grow one step at a time".
Source: Daily Sports Online
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