Comments made about women by Yoshiro Mori, the head of the Tokyo Olympics organising committee, were “absolutely inappropriate”, the International Olympic Committee (IOC) says.
Mori, 83, said women talk too much and that meetings with many female board directors would “take a lot of time”.
He later apologised for the remarks following calls for his resignation, but said he did not plan to stand down.
The IOC said last week it considered the “issue closed” after the apology.
Around 440 Games volunteers have quit in response to Mori’s comments, made last Wednesday, in which he also said female participants “get competitive” with each other in meetings.
On Tuesday, the IOC added the remarks were “in contradiction” to its “commitments and the reforms of its Olympic Agenda 2020” – though it did not mention any further action against Mori.
“Besides Mr Mori’s apology, the Tokyo 2020 Organising Committee also considers his comment to be inappropriate and has reaffirmed its commitment to gender equality,” the IOC said.
“As the leader of the Olympic Movement, we are committed to our mission to encourage and support the promotion of women in sport at all levels and in all structures, as stated in the Olympic Charter.”
Dan Roan, BBC sports editor
With scrutiny already intense over the wisdom of pressing ahead with plans for the Games in the middle of a pandemic despite widespread public unease, this has been a highly embarrassing and damaging episode for both the Japanese organisers and the IOC, which waited five days before condemning Yoshiro Mori’s comments.
With hundreds of volunteers having quit in protest at the gaffe-prone former prime minister’s refusal to resign, and fears that local sponsors may consider withdrawing financial support over the controversy, Tokyo’s organising committee is reportedly holding an emergency meeting on Friday to discuss how to handle a scandal that has sparked a wider debate about a lack of gender equality in Japan.
Many believe Mori’s comments – and the IOC’s belated criticism of him – make his position untenable. But others will worry that a change in leadership this close to the Games could make the job of organising them even harder.