Mon, Jul 21, 2003 - Page 4 News List

Stir caused by appointed Miss

SELECTION FIGHT One association has all the licences to send a Miss Taiwan to three pagents this year, but its rival says its selection process is more fair, just and open

By Melody Chen  /  STAFF REPORTER

Eleven Taiwanese beauties line up for an photo-op during a press conference yesterday announcing the upcoming Miss Taiwan Beauty Contest finals, which will be held this coming Sunday.

PHOTO: CHIANG YING-YING, TAIPEI TIMES

A row over which beauty shall be allowed to join the Miss World 2003 pageant overshadowed the finals of the Miss Taiwan Beauty Contest, which is due to be staged next Sunday.

The Beauty Development Association (BDA), which hosts Miss Taiwan Beauty Contest, complained yesterday the Beauty Contest Association (BCA) blocked its contestant from possible entry to international beauty pageants.

The BDA held a press conference in Taipei's Grand Hotel yesterday to introduce its contestants for the Miss Taiwan Beauty Contest finals and to make known its determination to send its Miss Taiwan to compete in this year's Miss World event.

The BCA is an older organization than the BDA and it has been able to obtain licenses to send contestants to all three major beauty pageants for 2003.

Hung Tiau-ken (洪條根), a lawyer employed by the BDA, said each country can only nominate one contestant for each of three major international beauty pageants: Miss Universe, Miss World and Miss International.

The BCA, said Hung, defeated the BDA in applying for the international beauty pageant authorities license because the former "has much more experienced in joining such events."

"The BCA obtained this year's license to join Miss Universe at the price of about NT$700,000. While the BDA expressed a desire to buy the license from the BCA, the latter said it would sell the license at NT$2 million," said Hung.

The BDA could not afford paying to pay NT$2 million for the license because it is facing financial difficulties caused partly by the sluggish economy, said Hung.

As a result, the BCA appointed Beverly Chen (陳思羽), currently a student at the Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology, to join this year's Miss Universe beauty contest held at Panama in May.

Pageant privilege

* Every nation is sold one license for each of three major pageants.

* The three major pageants are: Miss Universe, Miss World and Miss International


The BCA's appointment of Chen dealt a blow to the BDA, which began its six-month long Miss Taiwan Beauty Contest in January this year. Chen's appointment came in the middle of the BDA's Miss Taiwan contest.

According to Hung, the BDA's Miss Taiwan would better represent Taiwan to join international beauty contests because the association's procedure of electing the contestants is

The way the BCA appointed Chen as to be Miss Taiwan in the Miss Universe contest was not transparent enough, Hung said. He added that the BCA's culture of beauty contests is questionable, because it was established by the late business tycoon Tang Jin-jung (唐日榮), who was widely known as the "King of Beauty Pageants" and was an infamous lover of gold and beautiful women.

Although the BDA has lost this year's license to join Miss Universe, it is now campaigning for the right to join the Miss World event in October, said Pan Fang-ching (潘逢卿), a manager of the association.

The BDA is appealing for help of the Overseas Chinese Affairs Commission and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs to secure the license to join the Miss World event, Pan said.

"Even if we fail to obtain the license, we will send our Miss Taiwan to join the Miss World event as an observer," added Pan.

It is yet unknown whom the BCA will send to join the Miss World beauty pageant.

Mandy Chou (周宜君), one of the BDA's 15 contestants to run for the Miss Taiwan crown this Sunday, said she felt it was unfair the BCA is the only holder of the license.

"If I can be elected as Miss Taiwan, I will definitely do my best to earn glory for Taiwan," said the 21-year-old university student.

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