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Miss SA shuns Miss World contest

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INDEPENDENT NEWSPAPERS

Pretoria-born Melinda Bam shortly after she was crowned Miss South Africa. Picture: Sizwe Ndingane

Just why is Pretoria-born Miss SA Melinda Bam not taking part in the Miss World Pageant in August?

While her publicist has attributed her withdrawal from the competition to “personal circumstances”, social media com- mentators yesterday were full of speculation as to why Bam had withdrawn from the modelling pageant.

The 23-year-old announced on Thursday that she would no longer compete at this year’s Miss World Pageant, but did not give any specific reasons as to why.

The first princess, Remona Moodley, will step in as SA’s representative at this year’s pageant in Ordos, Inner Mongolia, China, on August 18.

However, the model plans on fulfilling her duty of competing in the Miss Universe Pageant which takes place at the end of the year.

While the reason for her withdrawal from the Miss World Pageant is not quite clear at the moment, Bam said she was completely focused on winning the Miss Universe competition.

She said in a text message yesterday: “I am not attending Miss World due to a personal decision.”

“A decision well thought through to send Remona. Trust me, I want to be the best Miss SA there has ever been, and every decision I make will be one step closer to being the best representative there can be.”

She added: “Remona now needs support in her quest to win Miss World just as I will need the support to bring back another crown, the Miss Universe to South Africa come December.”

With news reaching social networks such as Twitter that Bam had withdrawn from the competition, she received a flurry of messages from her concerned fans.

Responding to questions about why she had withdrawn, Bam tweeted: “Only so we can have a chance at two crowns.”

Sponsors for Miss South Africa, Sun International, has also refused to get drawn into reasons why Bam had withdrawn.

“She has withdrawn due to personal circumstances, and we completely respect her privacy,” said Sue Klerck, Sun International Resorts Executive.

“There is absolutely nothing wrong with Melinda and she will be competing in the Miss Universe competition.”

Besides preparing for Miss Universe in December, Bam will work closely with Moodley to prepare her for the Miss World Pageant.

Moodley, 23, who hails from Joburg, said she was very pleased that Bam had come on board to assist her and was thrilled to be going to China to represent SA at the Miss World competition.

“Melinda has taken the scary element out of the experience and replaced it with a sense of anticipation and excitement.

“Her advice has been invaluable,” said Moodley.

Former Miss SA Joan Ramogoshi also wished Moodley the best of luck ahead of Miss World via her Twitter account.

Ramogoshi tweeted: “All the best, hun, go make us proud.”

Klerck said that Sun International had given Moodley its full backing ever since Bam pulled out of the competition.

“Remona is a smart young woman set for success,” said Klerck.

“We are extremely proud of Remona taking on this challenge and wish her success in her journey,” added Klerck.

Meanwhile, social commentators have been speculating as to why Bam had withdrawn from the competition.

On website Channel 24, one if its readers commented on Bam’s withdrawal saying “She’s pregnant”, while on social networking site Twitter, a user by the name of Vida15 tweeted: “So very very fishy. Melinda Bam is going to represent us at Miss Universe but not at Miss World for ‘personal reasons’? Remona to go instead.”

The Miss World title holder is Ivian Sarcos Colmenares of Venezuela.

Colmenares won the competition last year in London, England.

Pretoria News Weekend


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