Makkah beauty pageant thwarted
Authorities in Makkah have thwarted plans for a beauty pageant in the holy city, citing the Shariah law that prohibits such a show as reason for the decision.
The pageant, which was planned to take place in one of Makkah’s banquet hall palaces over a period of four consecutive days, starting next Sunday was canceled in response to several appeals by citizens who heard of the upcoming event on social media websites.
A number of local dailies confirmed news of the pageant while the promotional advertisement for the contestants through social media said that the pageant would be titled “Miss Makkah.” A local Arabic newspaper said that the advertisement clearly stated that “a beauty pageant is being held in Makkah for women of any color aged between 17 and 27 years.”
The advertisement called on potential participants to register and take part in the contest free of charge. It also said that the winner would receive a gold ring as the take away prize while runners up could expect valuable gifts.
The Makkah governorate received a report from the Commission for the Prevention of Vice and Promotion of Virtue (Haia), which cited complaints of citizens and invitations sent out to guests and participants as evidence.
The commission’s report indicated that the event was being planned at the initiative of an individual with no involvement of public or private sectors.
The citizens called for an investigation into the matter and authorities have confirmed that the woman who had planned the event had been questioned.
Sources said a Haia team had questioned a banquet hall official and confirmed that the hall had been booked for the pageant. The official said that some businesswomen had reserved the hall and paid for the event.
He added that the commission had instructed them to cancel the event.
Meanwhile, the authorities said that all individuals involved with the event are being investigated.