Ririka Sutou to Leave NMB48 After Marriage and Continue Working as Talent

When NMB48 member Ririka Sutou announced that she will be getting married at the 9th annual Senbatsu General Election, the fandom was shook. Especially because they didn’t even know that she was in a relationship.

Before the Sousenkyo started, Sutou spoke to the NMB48 members to reveal her plans which was received to varying degrees of joy. She chose the Sousenkyo to announce the news not because she wanted attention, but because she wanted it to come from her mouth rather than a tabloid.

Fanblog AKBZine has uploaded a subtitled video of her announcement:

Attaining #20 in the rankings, she revealed the news of her engagement during her General Election speech. Many took it as a joke at first and it took a couple of reinforcements of “I have a parter, I’m getting married” for the members in the audience to finally believe it.

As soon the event was over, tabloid magazine Shuukan Bunshun shed light on the circumstances surrounding Sutou’s partner and their relationship. This is the first relationship she has ever been in.

According to the report, Suto’s fiance is a commoner. Despite not wanting to reveal much information about him, the tabloid gathered that he is a man in his mid-20s who studied psychology and was in a band while he was a student, and is now working in the medical field.

Her fiance is said to have been a fan of NMB48 prior to meeting each other, understanding idol culture and the group’s dating ban policy and developing a relationship in private. “The love ban rule is something you decide for yourself,” she divulges in an interview with Nikkan Sports.

She denies the claim of him being a fan, saying he has never even seen her perform. Due to her schedule with her group, she was constantly in Osaka while he was in Tokyo and they continued their relationship long distance.

The couple have been together for more than a year. He is an acquaintance of her mom’s and they first met in November of 2015 at her mom’s restaurant birthday party.

He proposed to her at the start of this year with no ring, and the couple are in no rush to get married. She is not pregnant.

The 48 groups, and idols in general, are known for their strict dating ban policies with prior violations have been met with severe punishments. However, producer Yasushi Akimoto gave her the chance to stay within the group as a married woman. Despite his blessing, Suto plans to graduate from the group but details have not been discussed.

Post graduation, she would like to continue her career in show business as a talent, as well as attain an undergraduate degree. She is interested in philosophy and released a philosophy book in 2016 coauthored by Horiuchi Shinnosuke, a political sociologist, lecturer and researcher.

  • Comments

    • Huong Tran

      NMB’s Yoshimoto shut AKB Juri up for criticizing her at the election and pulled her out the theater performance next day so I believe they do intend to keep support her. 48G isn’t that strict with dating as people think, there are several girls that flew under radar because management ignored like SKE Kanon and NMB Akarin. They’ve said they judge by case. Riripon already under their subdivision but she probably thought it’s too much of a bother to deal with flacks since other members have criticized her wrong timing at the event too. I hope she’ll be happy but from what I read….this marriage isn’t going to last long lol

      • Dayse

        Why so? Oh, do share the juicy details! 😁

    • yacchaitai

      The people who threw their voting money at her are probably raging LOL

      • surfboardt

        I’d say getmoneybitch.gif, but it all went to Aki-P. =/

      • Owari Konoyono

        If she announces her marriage, she should do it before the election.
        Because this election is something to decide the place to sing on the stage.
        Fans are going to spend money to want their favorite girls to be in the best position.
        I do not think any fans cheer her on engagement.
        Fans will have no choice but to convince them that they have paid her a celebration for marriage in advance.

      • Huong Tran

        Nah those are the ones that spend too much and in way too deep to quit. 2ch comments aren’t too extra outrage about it. I I think she’s getting backlash more for how she announce it.

        here’s a tweet from her fan said he want to form marriage commitee for her lol

        https://twitter.com/super_x3_j/status/876048280504852484

    • james

      congrats

    • Bloodforge

      I wouldn’t be surprised if we see a bunch of the girls graduating because of this as well.

      • LouSak

        What you mean?

        • Bloodforge

          AKB changing into something they don’t want it to be.

          Although I guess it’s been slowly changing regardless, so maybe nothing will come of it.

    • What

      Wow, they only met in November 2015 and are already getting married? Wow, that’s a bit short for me but that’s not my business I guess so congrats :) I hope she gets her undergrad degree and is able to stay in the entertainment business also

    • faifantc

      Meanwhile, you have Miichan who shaved her head a minute ago because she was dating.
      lol. If only she knew it was this easy a few years ago.

      • Kanjo Maru

        Not even dating, just “stayed over” once (well, just got caught once)

      • Huong Tran

        it was easy for miichan. she’s in Ogi one of the bigger agency affiliated with AKB and they helped her get solo CMS and hosting gig for Kousagi. She was just being stupid when no one asked her to. Even after getting backlash for the bald mess, her agency still got her that fitness solo cm

    • MJBeatle

      She is only 22 years old…. I think it’s too quick….

      • G

        Isn’t she even younger? I think she’s only 20.

        So young, her first relationship, and they’ve only or mostly been long distance?

        I don’t judge her. It took balls to announce it the way she did. And it’s been a strange situation, both in terms of her being an idol and having a dating ban and then having to come out and announce it to beat the tabloid. She’s been under a lot of duress. But still, those details … it’s hard to be optimistic.

      • Matcha

        She’s 20, probably wants to be a typical lazy Japanese housewife.

    • l3012

      She already mentioned on her Yahoo! interview that the boyfriend wasn’t a fan, he was close to her mother.

      I found very distasteful how she announced it, but I give her kudos for addressing the issue directly, but she made an event that it’s about celebrating the success into a circus about herself. There were other ways to address the issue in a more personal way (like a handshake, maybe? she’s scheduled to have one on the 24th). But what’s done is done and Ririka’s personality has been always outspoken.

      This is very shotgun, hope time proves it wrong and her marriage is a happy one.

    • Like I said, go girl, do you. I ain’t mad at cha.

    • WorldGN18

      I wish her the best but this seems to be poorly planned, is her first relationship, they have been dating for less than a year and most of it was at long distance… and I still think the timing of the announcement was wrong, it really doesn’t feel like is going to last, but I guess they are in love

    • Matcha

      What talent?

    • lwavesurfer

      At least she’s planned everything…

    • M

      Just because they haven’t been together long doesn’t necessarily mean much in terms of how long their marriage will last. My dad proposed six months or less after my parents met and they’ve been married 13 years this year, strong as a rock. They didn’t know each other amazingly well although, they weren’t long distance, so they did have time to really get to know each other by the time they got married the following year.

      Good luck to her. Would have been cool if she’d stayed, even if only for a little while, as a married woman. Really kick those dating ban rules in the damn balls.