CHRISSILLA KABE TALIS in Suva, Fiji
PAPUA New Guinea has won the right to host the 24th Miss South Pacific (MSP) pageant next year.
Quest committee chairman Dadi Toka Jr yesterday bidded successfully to bring the pageant to PNG.
Mr Toka told The National before the bid that he was very optimistic about PNG’s chances of winning.
Solomon Islands and Fiji had also indicated their interest in hosting the 2010 pageant, and Mr Toka had said the Polynesian islands of the South Pacific might also bid to host the pageant in their islands.
However, the organising committee yesterday awarded PNG the right to host next year’s quest.
Meanwhile, Miss PNG Antonia Singut is doing very well in the pageant in Suva, Fiji.
Miss Singut keeps turning heads every time she walks into a room with outfits designed especially for each event by PNG Tailoring.
Complementing her outfits are her stunning smile, posture and approach to everyone in the room.
A total of 12 contestants are vying for the Miss South Pacific title, including the latest additions Aotearoa (New Zealand) and Kiribati.
Other countries participating are Cook Islands, French Polynesia, Samoa, American Samoa, Tuvalu, Niue, Solomon Islands, Tonga and Fiji.
On Sunday, Miss Singut accompanied by chaperone Molly O’Rourke, attended a combined church service with all the other contestants and their chaperones.
A photo shoot to help decide the special award of Miss Photogenic was also held on Sunday.
Daring to be different and at the same time show more of what PNG has to offer in terms of culture and originality, Miss Singut walked into the shoot wearing a bilum dress.
Visitation to island villages (stalls for the participating countries) on Monday saw Miss Singut in her Oro tapa wear.
Miss PNG is using every opportunity to show the rest of the Pacific how diverse her home nation is.
She impressed the crowd at the Albert Park later that evening when she greeted everyone in Fijian, then Motu and English in a manner that was endearing, charming and seemed to win over the hearts of the crowd.
Yesterday, the contestants attended a workshop presented by the International Labour Organisation based on youth employment, child labour and HIV/AIDS.
Today, the contestants and their delegation will visit the Fiji Museum and the Art Gallery.
The crowning ceremony and presentation of other awards will be announced later on Friday, followed by the MSP pageant ball.