The controversy surrounding the just-ended Miss Ghana pageant is likely not to end soon as respectable Ghanaians who knew what really transpired during the pageant keep voicing their frustrations.
Just as dust is about to settle on complaints from showbiz icon Kofi Okyere Darko that he suspected ‘foul play’, the event has received yet another condemnation based on reports that organizers did not fully cater for the feeding and other expenses of the contestants.
“They stayed in Mensvic Grand Hotel for like two weeks and then they moved to Holiday Express at the Golf House at Tetteh Quarshie Roundabout. Those two hotels were the organizers’ choice.
The girls didn’t choose to sleep there. So once you took them there, you should know it will be quite expensive for them to eat there.
But you took them there and they had to buy food at half price. So food was not provided for the girls in a way.
They were sleeping in the hotel but they had to buy their food.
I think that is out of order,” Yvonne McCarthy, a customer service consultant and a television presenter, told NEWS-ONE after she monitored the event until the final day.
She added: “If you are going to organize an event and you think you are good enough to organize, then you have to take care of the girls and take care of them well because the other thing is they were not allowed to go home that much.
It is not as if you can go home or you leave and you come and do your rehearsals.
You come with Miss Ghana team and so they should have provided you with breakfast, lunch and supper.”
Yvonne, speaking in exclusive interview with NEWS-ONE, accused Exclusive Events, organizers of the event, of exploiting the contestants.
From her point of view, the event was to extract money from the contestants rather than help them to achieve their dreams.
“I had issues with siphoning money from the girls. That is how I saw it because when you organize a pageant like this, you get sponsorship and your sponsors will provide them with hair, cream or whatever.
If you can’t provide them with those things, you allow them to go and get their own sponsors which a lot of the girls probably could have managed.
But they were not allowed to get their own sponsors and then they had to buy the hair, they had to buy the shoes they wore which I have never heard of before.
“When the girls are doing the audition, it is their own outfit that they have to use but when they are doing the pageant they are now representing the Miss Ghana brand so the brand has to sponsor them.
I know for a fact that each girl had to pay GH¢700 hundred for hair each. It was compulsory.”
At the Miss Ghana finale, she said organizers did not honour their promise to some who bought corporate tickets at a cost of GH¢350.
Organizers promised to give everybody who bought corporate tickets some souvenirs and hampers but majority of them didn’t get anything.
She called on Exclusive Events to come out and apologize and organise a more professional show next time instead of creating an impression that everything went well.
When contacted, Exclusive Events public relations officer Obed Boafo denied the allegations.
Mr. Boafo told NEWS-ONE that contestants were adequately fed and that to the best of his knowledge, the contestants did not use their own money to buy hair.
According to him, to the best of his knowledge, a company called Best Looks took care of contestants’ hair and none of them bought hair with their personal money.
On the corporate ticket issue, Mr. Boafo said hampers were given during the night and that “perhaps Yvonne McCarthy didn’t get her hamper”.