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May 1, 2023 Jester P. Manalastas 154 views

THIRTY-EIGHT candidates of the Miss Universe Philippines kicked off their five-day tour of Eastern Visayas yesterday with a Flores de Mayo motorcade in Tacloban City as part of the National Costume Competition (NatCos) of the beauty pageant leading up to coronation night on May 13 at the Mall of Asia (MOA) Arena in Pasay City.

The NatCos contest is hosted by the Offices of Speaker Ferdinand Martin G. Romualdez and Tingog Party list Reps. Yedda Marie K. Romualdez and Jude Acidre, and the City Government of Tacloban, Department of Tourism Region VIII, the Provincial Government of Leyte, the Provincial Government of Samar and the beautiful people of Eastern Visayas.

“This competition, although non-points bearing event, is the most anticipated portion by pageant enthusiasts. The MUPh will determine our next crowned queen who will represent our country on the world stage. We are all excited because the Miss Universe title has been held by many Filipino citizens,” Romualdez said.

“At talaga namang pinapahanga natin ang buong mundo sa kagandahan at kagalingan ng mga Pilipina. When the Miss Universe competition is on, a majority of Filipinos watch it with pride, knowing we always have a chance of winning the title,” he added.

Rep. Yedda said they hope that the five-day tour of Eastern Visayas by candidates of the Miss Universe Philippines will help showcase the beautiful people of the region, as well as its tourist spots and vacation destinations.

“This is also an opportunity to show the country and the whole world the beauty and wonders that Eastern Visayas can offer. It has been 10 years since Yolanda leveled our region. Pero dahil sa pagsisikap at pagpupunyagi ng mga Waraynon, nakabangon kami at nakausad pa mula sa trahedya,” Rep. Yedda, a former Binibining Pilipinas International 1996, added.

“Eastern Visayas has risen from the ill effects of the Yolanda tragedy and is thriving! We hope the Miss Universe Philippines pageant helps us get our message through,” she said.

As one of the hosts, Tingog Party list will choose three Tingog ng Pilipina awardees representing Luzon, Visayas, and Mindanao.

They will be declared winners of the national costume competition in May 4 for demonstrating exceptional talent, dedication to their craft, exhibiting grace, good moral character, ability to connect with other candidates, and can be a Tingog (voice) for women empowerment.

After the motorcade of the candidates, they were scheduled on a cruise of the San Juanico bridge, which connects Tacloban City in Leyte, and Santa Rita, Samar spanning a total length of over two kilometers.

Highlights of Day 2 include these places and events: Sohoton Caves and Natural Bridge, Secret Kitchens of Samar Food Festival, Banig Weaving in Saob Cave, St. Michael the Archangel Parish Church, and Banig Fashion Show, and a fellowship dinner at the Leyte Provincial Capitol.

For Day 3, the candidates will be taken to the Kalanggaman Island Escapade in Palompon, Leyte for a tour, after which a dinner will be held with officials of Tingog Party list and Tacloban City Mayor Alfred Romualdez.

Day 4 marks the NatCos competition proper, which is composed of these parts: A photoshoot in Sta. Fe, Leyte; a costume rehearsal at the Leyte Normal University (LNU); and the actual competition at the LNU.

On the last day of the 5-day tour, the candidates will be having breakfast with Rep. Romualdez at the Nipa Hut in Tacloban City, after which they will visit the SOS Children’s Village.

They will also have a Tacloban and Palo cultural and heritage tour, which includes the following: The Astrodome Yolanda Memorial Park, the Archdiocesan Shrine of Sto. Niño, Price Mansion, Sto. Niño Shrine and Heritage Museum and the Anibong Shipwreck, all in Tacloban; and MacArthur Landing Memorial National Park, Leyte Provincial Government Complex and a courtesy call with Gov. Leopoldo Dominico Petilla, all in Palo.

The last item in their itinerary is a visit to the Yolanda mass graves.