People should accept integrity of decision in Miss Heilala contest, says judge

Kapau ‘e nofo e kau fakamaau ke fakaongo e fakakaukau ‘a e tokotaha kotoa pe te tau mate pe ‘oku te’eki mahino ko hai ‘e ikuna, ko e lau ‘eni e taha ‘o e kau fakamaau ‘anepoo’. Ko e tali ‘eni ‘a ‘Eleni Levini-Tevi ki he ngaahi fakaanga kuo fai ki he kau fakamaau mo e ta’efiemālie ki he ola ‘o e Misi Heilala 2018. Na’e tau’atāina pe ‘a e kau fakamaau ‘e toko nima ne nau fakamāu’ pea paasi mei ai ki he kau ‘ātita’ ke nau toki aofangatuku ko hai ‘e ikuna’. Ko e sea’ pe mo e kau ‘ātita ne nau ‘ilo ki he ola fakamuimui pea ‘ave mei ai ki he MC ke talaki. ‘Oku ‘ikai ko e kumi talavou ‘ata’atā pe ‘oku fai ka ‘oku toe fiema’u mo e ngaahi makatu’unga kehe ke tānaki pea ke ma’u ai ha ‘amipasitoa lelei ‘a Tonga ke ne fakafofonga’i ‘a Tonga he fe’auhi fakafeitu’u’ hangē ko ia ko e teu filimisi ‘a e Pasifiki’ ‘oku ‘amanaki kef ai ki Tonga ‘i Tīsema’.

If judges of the Miss Heilala Beauty Pageant listened to everybody’s opinion it would take a lifetime to decide the winner, one of the judges said last night.

‘Eleni Levin-Tevi, one of the judges at this year’s event, was responding to criticism of this year’s judging.

“Everyone was supporting a particular girl,” Levin-Tevi said.

“This already makes their judgement biased. If we are to listen and take in everyone else’s view on which of the 15 contestants was to win, do you think we’ll run the Miss Heilala and complete it in one week?

“It’ll take a lifetime because the probability that all 15 groups of supporters would agree to one winner is zero percent.

“That is why we have judges with the credibility to do right by the criteria provided and make the best choice for an ambassador to represent Tonga at the regional level.

“People should be mature enough to take the result as true reflection of the judging criteria.”

This year’s Miss Heilala was Kalolaine Funganitao, Miss Aparaxus Tonga New Zealand, who was crowned in Nuku’alofa on Saturday night.

She said the five judges worked independently and their decisions were passed to the auditors’ desk.

The results were signed off  after the auditors checked that procedures had been completed properly. Only the auditors and the chair knew the result before it was passed to the MC.

Tevi said this year had been a tough competition and the final scores were very close.

“Miss Heilala is not about one person’s own gain of glory and perks, it’s a national responsibility to represent Tonga in many arenas to advocate our issues yet still uphold poise, elegance and beauty,” Levin-Tevi said.

The judging criteria for the Miss Heilala Pagent is aligned to those of the Miss Pacific competition to ensure the contestants were used to the regional procedure and the criteria on which they would be judged.

Tonga is hosting this year’s Miss Pacific competition.

Levin-Tevi said Tonga needed to welcome competitors from neighbouring island countries with a good spirit while supporting the kingdom’s own contestant.

She said Tonga must present itself as a respectful, mature host and not repeat what she described as the poor sportsmanship shown this week.

“We must not expose the people of the Pacific to childish, petty and negative public exchanges,” she said.

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Miss Heilala 2018 has been crowned

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