Dispute Leaves Miss Ethiopia Without Prize

Above: Contestants at the 2010 Miss Ethiopia Pageant in July
were promised that the winner will be awarded a brand new car.

Tadias Magazine
By Tadias Staff

Published: Tuesday, August 10, 2010

New York (Tadias) – The winner of the 2010 Miss Ethiopia pageant was to receive a brand new ride, the Chinese made Lifan 320, except the car dealership Yangfan Motors in Addis Ababa, who is the announced sponsor of the event, says it never made a written agreement to deliver the prize.

According to Addis Fortune, “Ethiopian Village Adventure Playground (EVAP) is to wait until Thursday, August 12, 2010, to see whether Yangfan will award a Lifan 320 to the newest Miss Ethiopia. Failing to deliver the prize may result in being taken to court while Yangfan, in turn, threatened to sue EVAP for defamation.”


Melkam Michael, a sophomore at Addis Abeba University Law School, was named winner of the prize last month at a ceremony held at the Hilton Addis, featuring celebrity judges including Mulatu Astatke and Meseret Mebrate.

The pageant organizers, who had publicized the award in advance, accused Yangfan Motors of canceling its commitment at the last minute and stealing their copy of the written agreement. According to Murad Mohammed, director of EVAP, Yangfan Motors took his copy of the written document without his knowledge, and he has been unable to regain possession of it. “It is not the 18th or 19th century where people only agree on something orally,” he told Fortune.

Yangfan Motors’ local Marketing Manager William Wong rejected the claims, denying the existence of such a binding contract. “There was no agreement to cancel,” he said. “We did not agree to give them a car and because EVAP did not carry out its responsibilities, we are not going to give them any discount.”

The report, however, points to another document that indicates the existence of a prior understanding. “Yangfan Motors had sent EVAP a letter on April 23, 2010, complaining that they had failed to promote the company on public media and billboards. The company demanded that the problems be corrected within one week or it would be ‘forced to cancel our entitled agreement of cooperation,’ according to the letter. ”

Meanwhile, Melkam says although she is happy to be named Miss Ethiopia 2010, she would not mind to sit behind the wheel. “I would be happy if I get the promised car,” she said.


Cover image: Group photo of Miss Ethiopia 2010 contestants (WorldShowBiz.info)

12 Responses to “Dispute Leaves Miss Ethiopia Without Prize”


  1. 1 Estifanos Gezahegn Aug 10th, 2010 at 8:00 pm

    This is hilarious. If I was the judge hearing this case, if you can’t produce and show me Exhibit “A”, a written and signed contract, then there is no case. Whichever way you look at it, the loosers are the girls here and of course Miss Ethiopia, who was obviously duped, either way. Case closed.

  2. 2 Meron Bati Aug 10th, 2010 at 10:16 pm

    Why is this always happening? There was some story last year too.

  3. 3 Afro Aug 11th, 2010 at 3:01 pm

    Give the car to the girl first and then duke it out in court, that’s your buziness. She got nothing to do with it.

  4. 4 China (Mame) Aug 11th, 2010 at 11:14 pm

    Next time bet on BMW…it fits Miss Ethiopia better.

  5. 5 Alemayhu Aug 12th, 2010 at 1:29 am

    Oh, God Help me….! Give the girl a total break & hand over the stupid little car.

  6. 6 Marketing Guru Aug 12th, 2010 at 10:07 am

    You have to give it up to Willam Wong, the Marketing Manager of Yangfan Motors. He did not get all the publicity he was seeking for his company from the sponsorship, so he is getting it now! How many of you have heard of Yangfan Motors or Lifan 300 before? I have not. That’s called marketing folks. Mr. Wong should contact me if he is ever in the U.S., I will hire him in a minute. Trust me he will eventually hand over the car, but he is going to squeeze all the juice out of this publicity first. Genius!

  7. 7 Rose Bush Aug 12th, 2010 at 12:39 pm

    Miss World 2010 is taking placle in China not South Africa, so Murad is wrong on that part.

  8. 8 Giuseppe Borrillo Aug 14th, 2010 at 10:37 am

    VERY IMPORTANT NOTICE:

    I kindly inform you and your readers that head of the Ethiopian Village Adventure Playground has been given notice last April that he is not allowed to operate on our behalf or use the name of MISS PROGRESS INTERNATIONAL organization and this means that no contestants selected by him and/or his organization can send delegate from Ethiopia to our world finals in Italy.

    His recent statement to the press that he will send a delegate from Ethiopia, the second runner up, Sosina Girma to Miss Progress International in Italy, is 100% false, we wil not accept her as he has no rights or agreement with us to do this.

    I kindly invite the readers to immediately notify me via email of any news of collaboration with Miss Progress International at borrillo@quipo.it

    Best Regards,
    Giuseppe Borrillo
    Miss Progress International
    Pageant Director
    borrillo@quipo.it

  9. 9 Former Miss Ethiopia Aug 14th, 2010 at 11:18 am

    This is very sad and so frustrating. The miss Ethiopia pageant should be given a bit more respect. This so embarrassing to most of us, but we are powerless to do anything about it. Just read this from the reporter newspaper and judge yourself: “The 19-year-old, secondyear Addis Ababa University law student won the beauty competition held at the Addis Ababa Hilton Hotel after fears escalated that it might not materialize. The highly publicized show announced that it might take place at the Addis Ababa Hilton Hotel over the Sheger FM radio for the organizer had not booked the venue until the last minute.” The report also quoted the organizers that Miss Ethiopia 2010 will take part in the Miss World Cultural Heritage 2010 in South Africa. The event takes place in China, not South Africa. What does this tell you?

    Somebody, please get a handle on this? What is the law against peddling false dreams to young girls?

  10. 10 MR CULTURE Aug 15th, 2010 at 6:41 am

    @Former Miss Ethiopia>>>>>> WELL YOU KNOW THERE IS NO LAW AGAINST PEDDLING FALSE DREAMS IN ETHIOPIA, WE ALL KNOW IT IS THE NORM RATHER THAN THE EXCEPTION. Every one has jumped on the pageant bandwagon to try and make money by coning sponsors and exploit the gullible Girls.

    For the record there is no pageant called: Miss World Cultural Heritage, it is called:
    MISS CULTURAL HERITAGE WORLD. I invite readers to Google this pageant

    Ethiopian Village Adventure Playground carefully and deliberately reworded the name and location of the pageant to confuse the sponsors and the public in to thinking it was MISS WORLD 2010.

    Last year Ethiopian Village Adventure Playground was also claiming they were giving 60,000 Birr Diamond rings as the top prize, one would have to ask why give a 19 year old girl in Ethiopia a 60,000 diamond ring as her prize?

    IF ONLY LYING WAS AN OLYMPIC SPORT……….

  11. 11 Lenin Aug 19th, 2010 at 2:28 pm

    {This has happened before.}

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