Every year, AKB48 holds their general election, also known as Senbatsu Election, to determine which AKB48 or sister group member will be at the forefront of the groups’ activities. It’s a big deal for both the fans and the idols themselves. However, it looks like they’re not gonna be holding one this year.

The super group’s official blog itself made the announcement, though it did not state why they’re not gonna do a Senbatsu Election this year. This also comes at a time where last year’s winner, HKT48’s Rino Sashihara, announced her graduation from the group. However, the blog did ask fans to continue supporting the idols this year even if they’re not holding the elections. This will be the first time that the super group is not going to hold their general elections since launching it in 2009.

Japanese music mogul Yasushi Akimoto produces AKB48 himself. He recently partnered with the 2020 Tokyo Olympics to help produe its opening ceremony. He’s also forming plans to create a new mega group called Japan48, and he will be drawing from the members of AKB48 and its Japanese sister groups. Many fans believe this may be why they’re skipping this year’s elections to concentrate on that.

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