Miss Global 2019 coronation surrounded with accusations of deception

22 Jan 2020 | Abigail Henry

The coronation ceremony of the 8th edition of Miss Global was hosted on 18th January 2020 in Oaxaca, Mexico where delegates from all over the world competed for the coveted crown. Karolína Kokešová Miss Global Czech Republic 2019 was crowned as Miss Global 2019 at the end of the event finale.

The event was nothing less than a whole dramatic event, which involved a lot of obstacles in the coronation leading to many consequences. Allegations of preferential treatment and fraud casted a shadow on the pageant and its newly crowned winner.

Contestants said during their two weeks in Mexico that they noted continual, preferential treatment for Miss Mexico as she got a private suite and a team of hair and makeup artists. Other contestants shared hotel rooms and artists. "From the onset, it was clear that the host country’s contestant was offered special allowances: able to come late to rehearsals or not at all, personal assistants, makeup artists, hair stylists while many of us [weren't] offered the same luxury; often hearing that there were not enough hair/makeup artists to service us contestants," said Miss Global Bahamas 2019 Jerchovia Moxey.


Karolína Kokešová Miss Global 2019 winner


The contestants stated pageant CEO Van Pham told them in the days leading up to Saturday’s finale that the pageant’s in-country sponsor was attempting to force him to fix the outcome for Miss Mexico. The women said they were informed 25 would advance to semi-finals, instead of 20, which they believed was to appease the sponsor and allow Mexico to be called.

The so-called Top 25 were called and competed in sportswear, with that score to be combined with preliminary scores to determine the Top 10, according to the contestants. The contestants said that they were informed backstage that scores for the Top 11, which included a wildcard vote, were miscalculated. One contestant said specifically that the Top 10 placements had been based on sportswear alone, not sportswear plus the preliminary scores. The women said they were told there would be a Top 18, to accommodate the contestants who would have made the cut had the scores been properly calculated.

One contestant stated Pham and the sponsor were arguing prior to the announcement of the Top 5, presumably over Mexico’s placement. She said that prompted Miss Colombia to defend Pham onstage, under the impression that the sponsor was pressuring Pham. She also said that the beauty later learned, from judges, there was no scoring beyond the Top 18 and that Pham hand-picked the Top 5.


Jesenia Orozco Miss Global Colombia 2019


Several online videos showed Miss Global Colombia 2019 yelling onstage while contestants walked off of the stage. The contestants shared that many of the contestants left discouraged and frustrated by the night's events. "Confused and angry many of my fellow contestants were disgusted by the night's events, packed up their things and left to go back to the hotel; it was after 2am after all," Jerchovia Moxey Miss Global Bahamas 2019 said. "After a cluster of confusion, I packed my things along with my sisters frustrated and discouraged by the whole ordeal," she added.

With conflicting accounts of which person may have influenced or attempted to influence the results, Pham issued the following statement where he said, “During this year’s telecast Ramiro Gutierrez, our host country sponsor who is not associated with our organization, put pressure on the organization to favor the home country candidate, Miss Mexico. This violates our rules, integrity, and ethics. When we informed Mr. Gutierrez of our unwillingness to compromise our integrity, he immediately pulled the plug on the telecast. We appreciate Miss Colombia’s public protest against Mr. Gutierrez's pressure campaign and the need to uphold the rules and procedures that Miss Global has always honored. In addition, the Mexico-based CPA firm overseeing the results informed us of an error in its calculations from the prior weeks’ scoring. Fortunately, this error was detected early and did not impact the final results. While we were forced to halt the competition by Mr. Gutierrez's actions, we made the decision to crown the highest scorer at that point in the competition, Miss Czech Republic.”