MAASIN CITY- Southern Leyte Governor Damian Mercado crowned 24-year-old Mary Diane E. Lesiguez as Miss Southern Leyte 2016 during the grand coronation night held on Wednesday, (June 29),at the Provincial Capitol Sunken Garden, this city. The governor was assisted by outgoing Miss Southern Leyte Ma. Karina Dizon. Southern Leyte is composed of 18 towns, including the historic Limasawa and each sent a contestant to the province-wide search dubbed “battle of beauty and brains” She bested 17 other hopefuls from across the province which celebrated its 56th foundation Day on July 1,2016. Lesiguez represented the municipality of Macrohon being the reigning beauty queen of the town.
Observers said she had apparently impressed the contest jurors with her wide-ranging grasp of environment-related issues, as well as women empowerment concerns, political and general information topics during the question and answer (QA) portion of the pageant. “I would gladly pursue my advocacies in community services like medical missions, nutrition feeding projects for the poor and malnourished, involvement in proper garbage and waste disposal, and promotion of local tourism which my home-province of Southern Leyte has a lot to showcase,”Lesiguez substantively replied when asked the final question: If you were to win Miss Southern Leyte how can you be a good role model to contribute in the progress of the province?
The five-member panel of judges included Andrew Wolff, UK –born Filipino/British Rugby player currently playing for the Philippine National Rugby Sevens Team(The Philippine Volcanoes) and celebrity Erika Diaz, Miss Queen World Cebu 2016 and former DPWH Undersecretary Mabini F. Pablo. Rounding up the Miss Southern Leyte 2016 royal court are 4th runner-up Layra Cabatingan of San Juan town; 3rd runner-up Jolliene Bagasbas of Pintuyan; 2nd runner-up Wella Cruz of Maasin City; and 1st runner-up Lean Mae Palco RoaLili of Malitbog. Macrohon Mayor Fe Gaviola Edillo, in an interview, said that having produced this year’s Miss Southern Leyte 201“is indeed one legacy I am proud of in the pursuit of cultural identity of our municipality”.
Miss Lesiguez is a chemical engineer. She studied at U.P. Diliman, Quezon City and passed the licensure exam in June last year. She presently works at the Environmental Management Bureau (EMB) Regional Office No. 7, Cebu City. (AEL)