Princess Mako, the eldest granddaughter of Japan’s Emperor Akihito, made headlines in 2017 when it was announced that she would willingly give up her royal title (and the perks that came with being part of the royal family) to marry a commoner she met in college.
Everyone just loved the idea of a modern-day princess choosing love over her royal title. It’s like a fairytale come true!
The princess had met Kei Komuro during the student exchange program information session at the International Christian University in Tokyo in 2012. She was seated right behind Kei; this gave the young man a chance to talk to the princess. The two would quickly fall in love.
When Kei proposed to Mako in December 2013; though the engagement was kept a secret for years. Mako knew she would lose her royal title if she marries a commoner like Kei, yet she was ready to give up everything for love.
The couple was set to wed in November 2018, but Kei would reportedly postpone the wedding to pay for ‘student loans’ that the family contests to be more of a ‘donation’ than something considered as debt.
While Kei was still in school, his mother’s then-fiancé gave her 4 million yen ($36,500) to help fund the young man’s education. When the two split up in 2012, the ex-fiancé amicably told Kei and his mother that the money had been a gift, not a loan; there was no need to repay him at all.
But the man changed his mind the following year, demanding them to pay him back. Since Kei’s mother had no means to pay her ex-fiancé, she told him so – and the man kept quiet until Kei made headlines for his upcoming wedding to Princess Mako. The guy now demands to get paid.
When the royal wedding was postponed, speculations were rife that Kei is trying to solve the ‘student loan’ problem first as this could affect the royal family.
Princess Mako’s father, Prince Fumihito, announced that unless the couple can ‘clear the problem’, the ritual for the formal engagement and wedding will not be held.
It is believed that Kei was finally able to pay off the loan as the 27-year-old lawyer currently works at a law firm in Tokyo. The Imperial Household Agency announced that the wedding will be held in 2020.