Miyawaki Sakura has announced she will be graduating from her original Japanese group HKT48 on June 19.


The former IZ*ONE member made the announcement at the showcase marking the release of HKT48’s 14th single “Kimi to Doko ka e Ikitai”

I have an announcement to make. I will be graduating from HKT48. I joined HKT48 when I was 13, and have been active with the group for 9 years as one of the first generation members. Even though I was away from the team for two and a half years, HKT48 to me is where I started my career. I have realized that it will always have a special place in my heart.

The idol Miyawaki Sakura was born from HKT48. I have spent years of my life here and I have learned so many things here. I have been surrounded by so many precious friends. Watching HKT48 these past two and a half years, I have seen and felt the growth of the newer generation members, and I feel happy seeing them [do well]. With that, I thought that everyone, including myself, is moving to the next stage of their career.

Because of that, even though there is only a short time until my graduation, I want to carry out my activities while repaying everyone for the 10 years I spent with HKT48. Since I just returned and am making my graduation announcement, I’m sure many of you will be sad and disappointed. However, until my graduation, I am preparing activities that will give everyone in HKT48 hope and bring happiness to the fans. I will also be holding my graduation concert on June 19.

— Miyawaki Sakura

Previously, it was rumored that Sakura would be graduating from the group through a leaked report from a Japanese magazine. She has also been linked with HYBE (previously Big Hit Entertainment).