Onishi Momoka Announces Graduation, Increasing AKB48’s Departures This Year to 33

AKB48 member Onishi Momoka announced at one of the final performances for Team K‘s Saka Agari concert that she would be graduating from the group effective next February.

She mentioned at her announcement that while she had wanted to leave this previous May, she waited until the anniversary of her father’s passing to announce her determination to leave.

Despite the rush of graduations, there seems to have been little impact on sales — though this is less likely due to the fact that the departing members are not popular, and more due to the fact that the latest single, Idol Nanka Janakattara, marked a return to in person handshake events. Of all the major idol groups, AKB48 has been the longest holdout against in person events. They still maintain a ban on calls at performances as of this writing. Fans have taken to calling the rush of girls graduating as “restructured” members.


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