Photo/IllutrationRino Sashihara, center, is the top vote-getter in the AKB48 election held in Okinawa Prefecture in 2017. Mayu Watanabe, left, was the runner-up, followed by Jurina Matsui, right. (Asahi Shimbun file photo)

AKB48 fans are saying "No Way Man," one of the Tokyo-based idol group's top hits, after hearing that there will be no "General Election" this year after 10 hugely successful years.

AKS Co., a company that manages AKB48, on March 13 announced that the massive fan popularity contest will not be conducted this year.

“Ten years is a major turning point, and it is the main reason to not hold the election this year,” an AKS spokesperson said. “What will happen next year and beyond has yet to be determined.”

Since 2009, the pop idol group has held the election every year to select members who would perform a new AKB48 single CD.

Among various ways to vote, AKB48 fan club members and buyers of a selected single CD of the group could cast a ballot, as well through official smartphone apps and fan club memberships.

More than 3.83 million votes were cast in the 2018 election.

“The AKB48 Group will continue to work with each passing day to become a group that our fans want to genuinely cheer on,” the management company said in a statement posted on its website.