Name Change Reflects Inclusivity Of Regional Beauty Pageant

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Miss South Pacific to become Miss Pacific Islands

By Lanuola Tupufia

APIA, Samoa (Samoa Observer, Dec. 15, 2014) – A name change of the region’s beauty pageant from ‘Miss South Pacific’ to ‘Miss Pacific Islands’, has been met with widespread approval from the contestants.

Miss Papua New Guinea, Grace Nugi said the change is brilliant.

P.N.G. is one of the Pacific islands that is not located in the south of the Pacific.

"It’s important that we are now being inclusive," said Miss P.N.G.

"It is wonderful that the committee has finally agreed to change the name.

"The Pacific Islands cover all areas of the Pacific, not just south or north and we are glad to be part of that."

Miss Tonga, Cassandra Ngaluafe agreed.

She said the name change of the pageant not only ensures that all islands are being recognized but it gives recognition to young Pacific island women and their contribution to regional affairs and their ability to advance in diverse fields.

Yesterday the event to officially change the name was held at the Samoa Cultural Village at the Samoa Tourism Authority.

Established in 1987 by the government of Samoa, it was crucial to have the name change take place in Samoa.

Media officer of the Miss Pacific Islands pageant, Su’a Hesed Ieremia said discussions about the name change first came up in 2011, in Samoa.

"It was decided in Honiara last year that the name change for Miss South Pacific be made official," said Su’a.

According to Su’a the decision was based on the views from other Pacific Islands "that they are not in the South Pacific but are in the Pacific.

"All Board members are from different Pacific islands and have supported this and we decided to make the change."

The pageant’s coordinator, Kristian Scanlan explained that the reigning Miss South Pacific Teuira Napa will be "displaying the crown as Miss Pacific Islands however she will still be Miss South Pacific and was the last one to be crowned as such" with the original name.

Seven contestants vying for the Miss Pacific Islands with the reigning Miss Teuira Napa from Cook Island attended a church service at the Imaculate Conception of Mary, Mulivai yesterday as the pageant programme officially kicked off.

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