Kitahara Rie performed her final stage of [Seifuku no Me] on 9th May, ending her concurrency as an SKE48 Team S member. She will revert back being just a member of AKB48's Oshima Team K. Taking her place will be Umeda Team B's Oba Mina, who will be joining SKE48's Team KII.
Kitahara Rie's concurrency with SKE48 was announced during the AKB48 Tokyo Dome concert on August 2012. She made her debut on Team S's [Seifuku no Me] stage on 13th February 2013, performing for 2 months before her concurrency was shuffled from Team S to Team KII at the SKE48 Gaishi Hall concert in April. That was however overruled when at the AKB48 Group Rinji Soukai concert later that month, Togasaki announced the ending of her concurrency.
Kitahara Rie's comment (translated by MajouShoujo48)
Today my work as a member of SKE48 reaches its end.
It both feels like it’s been a long and a short time but, well..
It didn’t even pass a year, so I guess it was really short.
It was but…still, I was able to make lots of memories with everyone in SKE48, and I’m so happy I’ve had the chance to do that.
It’s not been easy, not at all…it’s been considerably hard,
but this concurrent position really turned out to be
something very positive for me, it made
me realize that there’s nothing impossible to do,
and so it also gave me a lot of confidence in myself.
It was a really wonderful period, in which I’ve had
the privilege to pass through this experience and
find a lots of new precious things for me.
Turning back only to AKB48 would mean to just turn back where I used to be in the first place, but…
if it feels so sad and lonely it’s definitely because it’s been really enjoyable for me to work in SKE48.
Everyone, thank you from the bottom of my heart for your support.
SKE48’s fans are all very very supportive of the group,
and I’m genuinely tremendously envious of SKE48’s members for this love they receive.
Now Ooba Minachan is going to come here after me, as a member in a concurrent position so…
Please, everyone…be so kind to welcome her warmly.
I count on you.