Sharifa Akeel: From humble beginnings to burning controversy

Published September 4, 2020, 4:14 PM

by Neil Ramos

She may be embroiled in controversy now following accusations she is making sweet music with the very much married congressman from Maguindanao, Esmael “Toto” Mangudadatu, but there was a point in beauty queen Sharifa Akeel’s life where everything seemed only too simple.

Akeel, a teacher, grew up in a shanty in Sultan Kudarat.

She would rise to fame winning titles in various pageants, the most prestigious of which was the Miss Asia Pacific International crown she earned in 2018.

One would think she would easily distance herself from her past at that point but, no.

Akeel would go on to make good use of her backstory in inspiring devoted fans.

Akeel in front of her humble home (Facebook)

She even posted on social media photos of their house.

She said, “My house today might not be like other’s house but mind you, ‘a home can be called a house but a house to be called a home is a different story.’”

If one is wondering why she is seemingly only too eager to swing attention towards her simple, rural beginnings, Akeel has a ready explanation.

Akeel in the dining area of their house (Facebook)

“I’m just being true always, I am not ashamed to share to everyone what my house looks like and where I came from. I know someday, I will build not only a house, but a mansion to be called a home. Inshallah!”

She added in a separate Facebook post, “I came from poverty. I slept in a slanted hut. Had nothing to eat that I had to get left over Rice stalks from fields to have a cup of Rice for me and my grandmother. I wished to find coins on the road to have a bit of money. I grew up with lice because I had no money for shampoo. And my feet were always wet because my shoes had holes. Now, I chose to fight for me and rewrite my story.

“I realized that a strong, independent woman has the courage to be the best version of herself. Yes, it takes courage and strength but it is worthwhile. Until you start trying to become the best you can be, you never really know the true potential that is within you. But if you have the courage to embrace your potential you will be able to make an important contribution to the advancement of this planet.

Akeel inside her house (Facebook)

“To all the little girls who are reading this, never doubt that you are valuable and powerful and deserving of every chance and opportunity in the world to pursue and achieve your own dreams.”

Note that Akeel even mentioned her past in her recent post addressed towards a certain “Desperada.”

She said, “I was born and raised in a poor family setting at hindi ako nagpapanggap, hindi ako umaapak sa estado ng buhay ng iba at higit sa lahat hindi ako naghahamak ng kapwa.”