Cultural potpourri | Big turnout for Mutya ng Davao 2018 screening

WOW, 69 young Davaoeñas trooped to the Kadayawan Hall of the Royal Mandaya Hotel last Feb. 25, 2018, at 1 p.m.  With each applicant nursing a childhood dream of becoming a beauty queen someday, the young ladies bravely faced five judges during the screening process who quizzed them with questions which ranged from the most popular beauty pageant questions to relevant issues happening in the country today.  It took the judges, namely lawyer/popular host Resci Angelli Rizada, Councilor Al Ryan Alejandre, Integrated Gender and Development Division OIC Lorna Mandin, Davao City Investment Promotion Center OIC Lemual Ortonio and Arch’t. Michael Ebro Dakudao six-and-a-half hours to come up with the best 30 candidates (whose names will be formally announced today, February 27) who will officially compete for this year’s Mutya ng Davao crown.

APPLICANTS for the Mutya ng Davao 2018

APPLICANTS for the Mutya ng Davao 2018

The qualifying candidates for the Mutya ng Davao 2018 beauty pageant are 18- to 26-year-old Filipino citizens who have been residing in Davao City for at least two years.  They must be “single females who have never been married, are not divorcees nor had their marriage annulled.”  Yes, they must not be pregnant nor have they ever been pregnant in their young lives.  The applicants must be a high school graduate and of good moral character; and must not have been convicted of a crime.

The 30 official candidates will compete in a scheduled pre-pageant event from which 15 finalists will be selected.  The lucky 15 finalists will move on to compete with each other during the Talent Competition and Coronation Day (not to be held at night this time as requested by the City Mayor Sara Duterte-Carpio) where top five candidates will be crowned as this year’s Mutya ng Davao, Diwa ng Davao, Sinag ng Davao, Pag-asa ng Davao, and Patnubay ng Davao.

DAVAO City Tourism Officer Generose Tecson

DAVAO City Tourism Officer Generose Tecson

“The turnout of applicants for the screening of Mutya ng Davao 2018 was overwhelming.  I’m sure the panel of judges had a challenging time in choosing the official candidates because there were many beautiful, smart and accomplished ladies to choose from.  Aside from the preparations my team is now doing for this year’s Mutya ng Davao, it is also exciting to know that the cash prizes have increased.  The new Mutya ng Davao will receive P100,000 in cash.  On the other hand, her court of beauties will receive from P75,000 to P40,000.  Cash prizes will also be given to the special awards winners.  The Coronation Day will be held this time at the newly renovated RMC Filoil Flying V Event Center (formerly the RMC Gym), on Mar. 15, 2018, at 4:00 pm.,” detailed Dan Salvaña, Jr., the Mutya ng Davao 2018 Director and proprietor of Salvo Events.

“There are a number of very excellent candidates this year.  They are Davaoeñas who can truly represent Davao City.  The City Government is looking forward to these girls to help promote the City as a tourism and investment destination.  We also look forward to how their advocacies can support the programs of Davao City,” commented the Davao Investment Promotion Center OIC Lemuel Ortonio.

MUTYA ng Davao 2018 Director Dan Salvaña, Jr.

MUTYA ng Davao 2018 Director Dan Salvaña, Jr.

Former Mutya ng Davao now lawyer Resci Angelli Rizada, on the other hand, expressed her honest opinion which I agree with, “Most of the applicants were able to present themselves well amidst all the pressure but there is a need to improve their awareness on social issues and develop concrete ways of using their influence in raising public consciousness especially on matters of national concern.”

One candidate whom I asked on the relevance of the EDSA Revolution to young Filipinos today answered that it gave Filipinos the freedom from colonial rule and oppression!  The candidates were staunch supporters of President Rodrigo Roa Duterte even when I asked them about issues raised against the President such as his being a “threat to democracy,” “human rights violator,” “violator of press freedom,” “male chauvinist,” among others.   When asked on what the important lesson is to be learned from the “Marawi Tragedy,” not one gave a substantial answer.  Oh yes, there were repeaters now in fighting form obviously inspired by Miss Universe Pia Wurtzbach who would try and try again till they get the coveted crown to represent Davao City.

THE SCREENING committee (l-r): Lemuel Ortonio, Lorna Mandin, Al Ryan Alejandre, Resci Rizada and Michael E. Dakudao

THE SCREENING committee (l-r): Lemuel Ortonio, Lorna Mandin, Al Ryan Alejandre, Resci Rizada and Michael E. Dakudao

Garnering the highest scores from among the 30 candidates during the screening were Cindy Pauline Benedicto, Claudine Alyssandra Verga, Mary Nicole Co, Iris Jule Escalicas and Maica Martinez.  Good luck to all the candidates.  Congratulations to Dan Salvaña and staff for a job well done.

 

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