An emotional Joy Barcoma faced the entertainment press in a virtual conference on Wednesday afternoon to clear her name over malicious rumors that involved the pageant candidate and a few girls in the Miss World Philippines competition.
Speaking to Manila Standard Entertainment, Barcoma, 22, representing the City of Mandaluyong in the annual beauty tilt, shared that she thought of withdrawing from the pageant after the issue had taken its toll on her mental health.
She revealed that a fellow candidate pointed fingers at her for spreading rumors that some girls were allegedly doing drugs.
“I almost had second thoughts. This is my first national pageant. But taking a step back and looking at the bigger picture, I realized that I’m not here [in the competition] just for myself, there’s something bigger than myself, and it’s the people who believe in me, and the people who will benefit for my cause,” she started.
“I had to fight and now I realized that I’m not just advocating for mental health anymore, I’m now advocating for the truth, for justice, and for equality. That’s the greatest lesson I learned from this battle that I’m still overcoming until now,” she carried on.
When the rumor started to spread within the pageant circuit, Borcoma’s name was dragged into the issue. She and her team made the pageant organizers aware of the issue to have it resolved internally.
“I was really hurt. Iba yung effect sa akin na lahat ng nasa environment mo ay galit sa’yo," she said
Although she refused to identify the fellow candidate, the aspiring beauty queen felt that a public apology is needed to clear her name.
"I want a public apology. I was bullied. This is character assassination. I want a public apology from her,” she firmly stated.
Asked if she believes that some girls in the competition were really into drugs, Barcoma said: “I don’t think so. I’ve known them and I don’t think they would do drugs. And if people want them to get tested, it’s up to the MWP Organization to decide.”
Barcoma is competing against 40 other candidates at the Miss World Philippine. The coronation night—originally set on July 25 at Okada Manila—was rescheduled to Aug. 8 at the same venue. The finals will air on GMA.
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