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#525803 - 09/13/17 05:11 AM Not one but Two Queens of the Bay  
Joined: Oct 1999
Posts: 55,706
Marty Offline
Marty  Offline

Parallel Crowning of Queens

And while there are other cases of weekend violence to report, we'll take a detour now, for something completely different. It's the Queen of the Bay - a decades-old beauty pageant that rarely makes headlines. But it is tonight - and that's because of a completely unprecedented event that happened when the new Queen was crowned at the official ceremonies on the Tenth of September.

First, though, for some context. One week ago we reported that Stann Creek's Aaliyah Ysaguirre had won the Queen of the Bay Pageant. So she was the Queen Designate who would be installed with the usual pageantry at the official ceremonies on the tenth September - as per tradition.

But then on Friday night, the Queen of the Bay Secretariat, chaired by Zeniada Moya sent out a release saying that Ysaguirre was out, she would not be queen; that title would now be given to Orange Walk's Esmeralda Cal. Apparently, Cal protested the outcome, leading to a re-tabulation of the scores. That process conducted on Friday September 8th., put Cal as the pageant winner. The Stann Creek Association cried foul - since they hadn't even been told about this process. the conflict, unfolding just hours before the Tenth official ceremonies led to a crisis meeting at NICH hosted by the September Celebration Commission - which is chaired by Deputy Prime Minister, Patrick Faber. But that process broke down - and so all sides went into Sunday's ceremony declaring that they would have it their way: Faber posted on Facebook that Ysaguirre would be crowned, while Maya sent out a 1:00 AM press release saying that Cal would be crowned.

And so it all came down to Sunday - our camera was on stage to see the drama unfold - Jules Vasquez narrates:..

Jules Vasquez reporting
Queen Designate #1 Aaliyah Ysaguirre did the ceremonial walk across the stage. Against a dazzling morning sky, she seems to have gone clear

The day was hers, the 72nd Queen of the Bay. But there was another Queen Designate waiting in the wings.

Esmeralda Cal was right there on the left of the reigning Queen.

Shari Williams, Hostess
"Ladies and gentlemen at this time I invite the person who is about to do the proclamation for the Queen of the Bay and that is the person Miss Dr. Candice Pitts."

While the Prime Minister looked on in bemusement

A little drama started to play out on stage - as pageant organizer Zenaida Moya tied to get to the mic, and emcee Shari Williams physically blocked her, telling her, under the mic "I need Dr. Pitts please":

A visibly reluctant Dr. Pitts then stepped hesitatingly to the microphone

She labored through the proclamation, and then dropped the bomb:

Dr. Candice Pitts
"Now do we by common consent declare, pronounced and proclaimed Esmeralda Cal, Queen of the Bay to be crown in the presence of all 3 gathered."

While Cal wore a frozen smile, there were howls of protest from the audience, but before Pitts could even finish, emcee Shari Williams stepped on stage to wheel that back:

Shari Williams, Hostess
"Thank you Dr. Pitts for that, now point of order ladies and gentlemen, we have a new proclamation to be read by Mr. Neal Hall."

Hall took a deep breath, and dutifully read the second proclamation.

Neil Hall
"Aaliyah Ysaguirre, determined to the joy of the people of the bay. Now do we by common council declare, pronounce and proclaim Aaliyah Ysaguirre, Queen of the Bay to be crown in the presence of all here gathered."

Shari Williams, Hostess
"Thank you Mr. Neil Hall and that is how you present a proclamation."

But that wasn't the end of it - as they moved to the coronation, there's Moya waiting in the wings. And as the reigning queen and Designate #1 step to the front of the stage to hand over the crown, Moya has her own chintzy cape, crown and not a scepter, but sort of a cheaply bought magic wand to put on designate #2. A police Sergeant who should be restraining her, acts as a kind of escort instead, while a defiant Moya takes her time mimicking the actions of the other queen at the front of the stage.

It is a parallel crowning, a scene, so surreal that it defies description, as Moya waits with the crown for the next command - to stuff the crown on her designate's head in this bizarre parallel coronation, as the police officer watches on absently - until Anne Marie Williams steps unto stage left, and literally pushes Emcee Shari Williams to the podium to break the spell:

Shari Williams, Hostess
"I'm being asked for the police department to kindly remove Zenaida Moya off the stage. Miss Zenaida can you please exit the stage."

And with that nod of thanks, Moya was gone, putting an end to the most bizarre event we have ever seen at a ceremonial event - and it all happened on live TV in front of the head of state, government and judiciary,

And as blameless Esmeralda Cal made a humiliated, hasty exit - her crown awaited in Orange Walk - but there was a greater humiliation coming for Moya whose face said it all.

Shari Williams, Hostess
"Miss Emma Boiton sent a special request, she wishes to wish everyone a happy September Celebrations. She ask me to thank Miss Zenaida Moya for her services and let her know that her services as chairperson of the committee will no longer be needed."

The queen may have cracked a mischievous smile and her court may have jeered. But there were probably stiffer salvos exchanged today than on the day of that mythical battle:

Jules Vasquez, reporter
"Miss Moya I've never seen anything like what happened today. What's your reaction to what you saw out here?"

Zenaida Moya, Chairperson Queen of the Bay Committee
"Well what happened is that the Queen of the Bay, we are very sorry for what happened. As the Queen of the Bay committee we wanted to ensure that everything has run right and that the rightful, the true winner is crown."

Jules Vasquez, reporter
"How did you feel in the moment Zanaida: police please remove Miss Moya from the stage?"

Zenaida Moya
"To tell the truth I did not hear it. If it was said, I'm not saying it was not said, but for me I had already - our committee had already done what was to have been done."

Jules Vasquez, reporter
"I am saying Miss Moya, how do you feel that these events have unfolded which it's such so distasteful and embarrassing. I mean they have to call for you to be removed from the stage, right after you make your coronation?"

Zenaida Moya
"Listen to me, in life when you know for a fact, because we have all the proof and the proof will be shown. In life when you know for a fact that certain things happen and you can show - you don't have any fear."

Jules Vasquez, reporter
"Zenaida, I have never seen anything even close to that. How do you feel? I mean you got punked right on stage."

Zenaida Moya
"Well I wouldn't consider that punked."

Jules Vasquez, reporter
"You got fired on stage Zenaida."

Zenaida Moya
"No, no, no."

Jules Vasquez, reporter
"They read a letter on stage saying that you got fired. Did you know that? That Shari read - Miss Emma Bointon has just sent a letter saying Zenaida Moya thank you for your services."

Zenaida Moya
"Nobody can fire. It was already passed to me. It is until I pass it on. Plain and simple."

Jules Vasquez, reporter
"Nobody trumps Miss Emma when it comes to Queen of the Bay. She is the coordinator. Is she not? And she sent a letter. Have you read the letter? It says hand over all materials, you are relieve of your responsibilities."

Zenaida Moya
"Listen to me, if whoever went to Miss Emma and spoke with her."

Jules Vasquez, reporter
"But Miss Emma, she is ailing."

Zenaida Moya
"She's ailing. Listen to me, I would never want to say anything against Miss Emma and I would never. Hold on..."

Jules Vasquez, reporter
"Is she not a sound mind? Is she not able to write a letter and sign it?"

Zenaida Moya
"I would never say anything against Miss Emma. Miss Emma is sick, she is ailing, She did suffer a stroke and I would never - no, I would not pull her in that. This will never happen again, because next time we will have a chartered accountant there who will ensure the process is right. We did not have the chartered accountant there."

Jules Vasquez, reporter
"Will there be a next time for you Zenaida? Will you be in charge of this next year?"

Zenaida Moya
"Listen to me Jules, as long as I decide that I want to continue."

Cal was crowned later that day in Orange Walk and Moya was there to do the honors. And just a few minutes ago, NICH sent out a release on behalf of the National Celebrations Commission. First, it, quote, "apologizes to the Governor General, the Prime Minister, the Chief Justice, Ministers of Government, the Diplomatic Corp, and the people of Belize for the unfortunate events that took place at the…memorial park...". It adds, "The National Celebrations Commission stresses that it did not decide the results of the pageant but merely upheld the results derived by the judges on September 2nd. The National Celebrations Commission takes this opportunity to apologize to Ms. Esmeralda Cal, Ms. Aaliyah Ysaguirre and the Belizean people for the unfortunate mismanagement of the pageant." End quote.

Channel 7


#525943 - 09/20/17 05:37 AM Re: Not one but Two Queens of the Bay [Re: Marty]  
Joined: Oct 1999
Posts: 55,706
Marty Offline
Marty  Offline

”MissEmma” Drops The Bomb On Z

In a story we promised to bring you last night - but didn't have time to - MisEmma - meaning Emma Bointon - who organized the Queen of the Bay Pageant for 15 years, before handing it over due to failing health, has weighed in on the recent dispute.

In a statement that she recorded for distribution, MissEmma says that the mandate for her to organize the pageant came from the Loyal and Patriotic Order of the Baymen - and that it is not a beauty pageant. She explains why she feels Zenaida Moya - who chaired the Queen of the Bay Committee - as taking it in the wrong direction:...

Emma Bointon
"Since this has happened, I don't take it as a who seh me seh you seh, no. I am saying I stopped the previous coordinator because she was taking the Queen of the Bay Pageant in the wrong direction. I do not like what the Queen of the Bay has been brought to, because are not a beauty contest. We are a patriotic event. The Queen of the Bay was made by the L&PO (Loyal & Patriotic Order of the Baymen) Committee and a patriotic gesture against Guatemala and I will take it up again and steer it into the direction it should go and aiding me are about 15-17 queens. So anybody who comes and wants to destroy the queen of the bay as a patriotic event has a fight coming from me. Please give the support to us when we come to you, because the Queen of the Bay cannot die. If we have to do what was done in the past - take it 3 miles out of town and have a Queen of the Bay pageant we will."

Zenaida Moya has not indicated that she has accepted MisEmma's decision to take back control of the Pageant.

Briceno Stands With the Queen In the North

And, of course, we had to get the leader of the opposition to weigh in on this one. He is from Orange Walk - and so is the jilted queen designate Esmeralda Cal. She got the bad part of the deal in a bizarre double crowning on the Tenth day, and Briceno wasn't even there to defend her.

Today, he said he stands with his Reina Del Norte:...

Daniel Ortiz, reporter
"How would you have addressed that situation? And seeing as how this is a fellow northeña what's your position on this particular issue?"

Hon. John Briceno - Leader of the Opposition
"Why are you doing this to me? Because you know I will be with my northena. As from what I understand - and I have not seen the evidence - as I understand, Ms. Cal actually won the pageant. She won almost all of the awards, and then, the big prize, she didn't win it? That by itself gave you cause to question. And I think that then her handlers or the people that supported her and helping her, started to query, and realized, hold on, something must have gone wrong. And when they asked that they check the numbers, I am told that they then saw that she really won, that it was an honest mistake, I believe. I hope it has nothing to do with racism, because that has no part in our society. Zenaida tried to correct it because she felt personally responsible. She was in charge of the pageant. Now, I must tell you that I met all of the contestants, and they are all really nice young ladies, and I am very proud of them, and I admire them for even having the courage to put themselves - to offer themselves to represent Ms. Queen of the Bay. Would I have handled it the way Ms. Moya did? I don't think so. But, I think that calmer heads could have prevailed, and we could have avoided that fiasco, because it is an embarrassment to both contestants. And it's not fair to any of them to because in this tug and war between the Deputy Prime Minister, and Ms. Moya, who was the person who organized the pageant."

Channel 7



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