In the lead up to the grand finale of the Miss South Pacific Pageant being held in Fiji, the 12 contestants in the pageant appeared for the second last round of public judging in Suva’s Albert Park on Thursday night.
British High Commissioner to Fiji, Kiribati, Nauru, Tonga, Tuvalu and Vanuatu, Mac McLachlan was chief guest at the judging for traditional attire and stage interview.
The following is how each contestant responded in the on-stage question and answer session.
Miss Cook Islands- Engara Gosselin
Attire: Gosselin appeared on stage with traditional attire from the northern group of Cook Islands. Her attire made from hibiscus tree, coconut fabric and black pearls was complemented by shells and bird feathers.
Question: If you were the president of your country for a day and had to make a change, what change would you make and why?
Answer: I would enforce laws which would assist us in preserving our environment and cultures. We can do this by going back to the traditional ways of preservation.
Miss Niue - Carthy Lavani
Attire: Lavani dressed up like a woman warrior from Niue and her attire was made of traditional materials and coconut fabric. Her attire represented Pacific unity in environmental conservation and the region’s rich and diverse cultures.
Question: The rehabilitation of prisoners is a way of giving them a second chance. What other ideas would you suggest to support this move?
Answer: I will suggest that they be provided programs that will ensure they will be able to support themselves and be productive. We also need to create awareness and not discriminate them. We have to look at them with the right attitude and give them all the support.
Miss American Samoa - Lorisa Matautia
Attire: Matautia showcased a “blast from the past” with her traditionally designed outfit made from banana tree and leaves. The outfit signified the life of the Pacific Ocean.
Question: What in your opinion are the major challenges Pacific Islands youths face today and why?
Answer: Coming from a small island, I would say that the major challenges facing our youths are lack of education and the influence from wrong peer groups. Our youths need to be educated so they can be better citizens and cannot be taken into bad things like drugs through peer pressure.
Miss Fiji - Merewalesi Nailatikau
Attire: Nailatikau wore a traditionally inspired Fijian costume which was a tribute to the mothers of Fiji and the Pacific. Her outfit was made out of traditional Fijian fabrics.
Question: What concerns you the most about what is happening in your country and how you will address it?
Answer: Something that concerns...