Binibining Pilipinas belies not assisting Samantha Lo with travel issues
MANILA, Philippines — Binibining Pilipinas Charities Inc. (BPCI) has belied allegations it did not help Samantha Lo, the country’s bet to Miss Grand International 2019, with her travel issues going to Venezuela.
“Ms. Lo also holds a US passport and, therefore, a transit visa is not needed. Past Binibini Queens have done this and have encountered no problems in their travels without transit visas,” BPCI said in a statement on Monday.
“It is also not true that BPCI did nothing to assist her,” BPCI added.
Lo earlier issued a statement saying a “local organizer,” which she did not name, “failed to equip” her with a proper transit visa that may have helped her complete her prompt trip to Venezuela.
Lo was absent during this year’s Miss Grand International welcome ceremony and press conference on October 15, and the swimsuit competition on October 17 in Caracas, Venezuela.
BPCI said it contacted the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) to assist Lo – through the help of Undersecretary Brigido Dulay.
“Upon hearing of her situation in Paris, we immediately called upon DFA to assist her, and they did. We are grateful for the intervention of Undersecretary Dulay, which otherwise would have resulted in very serious consequences for Samantha,” BPCI said.
“We wanted to support Samantha and help her resolve this. However, in the last few days, we were no longer able to contact her or her family,” it added.
DFA earlier said Lo did not have passport records after reports surfaced that the beauty queen was deported for carrying fake travel documents. /kga
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