BY JOEL CALAMBA ESCOL, Managing Editor
Due to unsolved debacles that the organizers of an international beauty contest in Uganda faced, the Philippines’ gem and Binibining Pilipinas 2022 first runner up Herlene Nicole Budol, has decided to “withdraw” from said competition.
This was officially announced by Youtuber Wilbert Tolentino to the Philippine media in a recent interview. Tolentino is Herlene’s current handler and talent manager.
Wilbert says in a Facebook post “Due to uncertainties by the organizers, I have decided to withdraw Herlene Hipon Budol from the competition despite numerous [attempts] to fix some [pageant] debacles.” We apologize to the supporters who were rooting for [her] since day one. To the team, sponsors, and designers. Thank you and I am sorry.”
The talent manager narrated their “traumatic experience” after arriving in said country located in Africa. he claimed that allegedly many of the contest participants were not able to enter the country for failing to undergo vaccination for Yellow Fever.
They have also learned that many of the pageant sponsors backed out from the contest and the beauty title holders who participated in the contest were not taken care of, as far as food and accommodation.
“Kanya-kanyang diskarte muna sa pagkuha ng kanilang matitirahan […] May apat hanggang anim nag-withdraw dahil mauubusan [ng] budget kung tumagal pa sila sa Uganda,” he says. “Wait na lang po natin ang official statement mula sa organisasyon, but rest assured we are all safe, [ang] buong Team Philippines.”
Meanwhile, Budol also shared her frustration on social media – as her national costume outfit did not arrive in Uganda in one piece. “Nakakaiyak at sobrang lungkot ng Hipon Girl niyo,” the beauty queen shared her frustration with emojis in her Instagram account post.
“Ang national costume mukhang na-disgrasya po ng airlines,” she claimed, saying how when the cargo arrived at the airport, the airline allegedly refused to carry it, and instead claimed it was allegedly oversized.
Budol said they needed to separate the pieces of the national costume into several boxes just to bring them all to Uganda.
“Ang masaklap, yung pinaka-body ng costume hindi nakarating ng Uganda,” Herlene cried. “Buong araw na kami nasa airport at tinengga oras namin at pinangakuan kami na darating ng gabi. Pero 2:30 a.m. na at wala na silang paramdam.”