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Japanese idol quits Produce 48 amid controversy

Matsui Jurina is quitting the survival reality TV show “Produce 48” due to health reasons, a decision that came after the Japanese idol star was embroiled in a controversy surrounding her attitude.

The officials of the Mnet show confirmed Sunday that she is off the program, a day after her original group SKE48 announced that Matsui is putting her career on hold for her health. The group said this means ceasing any activity on social media or personal mail. 

Matsui Jurina (Mnet)
Matsui Jurina (Mnet)

The 21-year-old has been one of the most well-known faces in the contest due to her career in Japan, particularly with AKB48 Group to which SKE48 belongs.

But last month’s controversy surrounding her attitude during the AKB48’s popularity contest “General Elections” -- during which fans accused her of being bossy toward fellow members -- appears to have cost her popularity among the fans.

Despite being ranked top in the aforementioned General Election, she had been slumping in the mid-show rankings of “Produce 48” prior to her early exit. 

By Yoon Min-sik