Tokyo, Aug 20:
Sakari Momoi, a 111-year-old Japanese citizen, was Wednesday officially recognised in Tokyo as the oldest man in the world by the Guinness World Records award committee.
Momoi bags the title after the death in early June of previous record holder, US citizen Alexander Imich, who was just one day older than the Japanese, the committee said in a statement.
Momoi was presented a certificate of his record at an event organised Wednesday in the Tokyo care home where he lives, attended by family, friends, local authorities and the media.
“I want to live for two more years,” said Momoi, who received the certificate sitting on a wheelchair and dressed in a black suit, white shirt and silver tie.
Born Feb 5, 1903, in Minamisoma in the Fukushima prefecture of central Japan, Momoi is “in good health” and eats three times a day, a municipal spokesperson of the Saitama prefecture where he lives told the Kyodo news agency.
The oldest man in the world has led “a quiet life” in which he worked as a teacher of agricultural chemistry and director of an education centre in Saitama, just north of Tokyo.
He enjoys reading, especially Chinese poetry, according to a statement of the Guinness World Records.
Travelling has been another great passion of Momoi, who toured Japan with his wife before her death although his health no longer permits him to do so.
The world’s oldest person is Misao Okawa, a 116-year-old Japanese woman who was born March 5, 1898.
Japan only trails Monaco as the country with the highest life expectancy, exceeding 80 years for both sexes.
According to the latest available data, Japanese men, on an average, live for 80.21 years and women for 86.61 years.