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Jeanine Brandt

Days after she was subjected to fierce criticisms for her comments on poverty in T&T, Jeanine Brandt, this country’s delegate at the Miss World 2021 pageant, has been named among 40 semi-finalists who will go to Puerto Rico from March 13 to 18, to compete in the next round of the competition.

The 40 semi-finalists, including 15 who were already elected as fast track winners and 25 selected by the judges, were announced on the Miss World Website yesterday.

There was massive outcry from citizens on social media after a video of Brandt making her presentation for her Beauty with a Purpose project for the pageant was made public on Monday.

In it she said: “In my country thousands of children live in poverty. Little girls sleep on the cold ground in makeshift homes. They have no access to running water, electricity. They cannot attend school. They have no access to healthcare, and they don’t even know where their next meal is coming from. No child deserves to grow up living under these conditions.

“I formed the Brandt Beauty Foundation to break the cycle of poverty among these families and these little girls and to give them opportunities to rewrite their dreams.”

Many took to social media to express their dissatisfaction and accused Brandt of grossly exaggerating T&T’s situation by saying there were thousands of little girls who sleep on the floor in their homes.

Brandt later issued a statement in which she said she was asked to present her project in under two minutes during the competition and meant no harm through her contribution. She subsequently apologised for the comment.

The finale of 70th edition of Miss World 2021, which was originally set to take place last November, was postponed due to health and safety concerns and has been rescheduled at Puerto Rico Coliseum Jose Miguel Agrelot.