Miss Papua New Guinea has been stripped of its crown after sharing a video of herself working on TikTok, where critics say the incident reveals a deep-seated culture of misogyny in the country.
Lucy Maino, 25, who has also served as co-captain of Papua New Guinea’s women’s soccer team, faced intense online harassment after sharing a video of herself working on the video-sharing app TikTok.
Although twerking videos are common in the application, Maino̵
The video was downloaded from her private account and shared on social media platforms and YouTube, where thousands of people piled up to criticize Maino.
Following the video and setback to it, Maino was “released” from his duties by the Miss Pacific Islands Pageant PNG (MPIP PNG) committee this week.
“Our main purpose is empowerment of women. We are a unique platform for festivals that promote cultural heritage, traditional values and sharing through tourism about our country and people, ”the committee said in a statement. “MPIP PNG promotes the virtues of trust, self-esteem, integrity and community service with a parallel focus on education.”
Allan Bird, the governor of East Sepik and co-chair of the coalition of parliamentarians against gender-based violence, condemned online harassment against Maino and wrote on social media: making a dance video? ”
A former Miss PNG, who did not want to be named, said the incident showed deep-seated women-free in the country.
“I’m sure if a male public figure made a TikTok , we would all laugh or even praise him, ”she said.
Maino received a football scholarship that allowed her to complete a degree in business administration at the University of Hawaii. She represented Papua New Guinea as co-captain of the national team in 2019 and won two gold medals at the 2019 Pacific Games in Apia, Samoa.
She was crowned Miss Papua New Guinea – a role involving acting as a cultural ambassador for the country and an advocate for women – in 2019. She has continued in the role for another year due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
Many people criticized the committee for not supporting Maino after she was attacked for the video.
A woman’s lawyer, who did not want to be named for fear of becoming a target for the people who harassed Maino online, said: “The committee could have handled it better by first outlining the clause that she was violating as a reigning queen. .. I feel like they threw her under the bus and did not give her a chance to get out and talk. That’s not the way to go. ”
The United Nations in Papua New Guinea expressed its dissatisfaction through a statement on Facebook: “We are seeing the devastation of violence against women and children in this beautiful country. Some through bullying have lost their lives … It starts with telling women to cover up. It starts with telling women they should not dance like that. ”
The Guardian approached Maino and the MPIP PNG committee for comment, but did not respond before the announcement.