Myo Koko San win ASEAN - LGBT Community Pride Awards 2018

19 June 2018
In the past,Lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender persons in Myanmar face legal challenges and discrimination not experienced by non-LGBT residents. However, along with the ongoing political reforms, improvements in media and civil freedoms have allowed LGBT people to gain more and more recognition in the country.
Myo Koko San, famous gay celebrity in Myanmar became the winner of ASEAN - LGBT Community Pride Awards 2018.
The LGBT Community Awards in ASEAN 2018 is  for their contributions and inspiration to the community.  According to the organizers, the prize is usually intended to bring about the spread of images of queens.  Myo Koko San officially became the representative of LGBT community in ASEAN with beauty, confidence and kind heart.
The LGBT Community Awards in ASEAN 2018 is an online contest and all Facebook users can participate by voting their favourite queens.
Last round of the contest between the two representatives Myo Ko Ko San from Myanmar and Huong Giang Nguyen from Vietnam was made in the 12th of June.
After the voting period of 24 hours ,organizers carefully checked all the polls from both Myanmar and Vietnam whether there are  fake or hacker help.  Myo Ko Ko Tint San won the vote with 91 points and many  internet users from Myanmar celebrate this achievement. This is also the proof that the social obstacles and barricades between LGBT community and non LGBT are gradually falling down though many forms of discrimination still need to be eliminated.
This success is also unique for the country because Vietnam is among the most liberal when it comes to LGBT issues. In Vietnam, the LGBT community enjoys more freedom than any other country in ASEAN. The government lifted a ban on same sex marriage in 2015 and is trying to end all forms of discrimination in the workplace and the rest of society.
In February, 2018 , an LGBT festival opened in Myanmar after authorities allowed organizers to hold the launch event in public for the first time in the Southeast Asian nation where same-sex relations remain illegal. The unexpectedly large crowd  also indicated widespread public support for the community. Myanmar has a law which is section 377 of the colonial-era Penal Code   that criminalizes “unnatural sex”, and many activists have been lobbying members of parliament to speak out against the law.
Over the past few years, LGBT beauty pageants have become more popular and LGBT voices are being more widely publicized, especially on World AIDS Day and the International Day Against Homophobia, Trans phobia and Biphobia.Additionally, there has been an increasing number of LGBT arts and social events such as the PROUD film festival – at a time when every opportunity to become more visible is a victory of sorts. So despite ongoing difficulties, LGBT in Myanmar are determined to stay positive.
Photo Credit : ASEAN Beauty Pageant