Rabiya Mateo has opted to see the silver lining in her foiled bid to take home the fifth Miss Universe crown for the Philippines, saying that all contestants who joined the Miss Universe 2020 pageant "are queens already, even without that crown."
In an Instagram live video from Lenka Nemer D’rpic of Bolivia, which has also been shared on a fan page for the MUP 2020 titleholder, Rabiya called her entire Miss U journey “a beautiful start for something new.”
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“And actually, it’s just gonna be one girl who’s gonna be crowned, but I know in my heart, every one of us, we are queens already, even without that crown,” she continued.
Miss Bolivia agreed, saying that the crown “is just a few months or a year, maybe. But friendship, us, is going to be for life.”
Rabiya continued to point out that it even goes beyond the friendships and experiences they gained along the way. “The impact that you made is also for life,” she explained. “It’s not every day that we get to represent our countries. So, this is really a great opportunity for all of the girls and we are happy to be here.”
Rabiya hoped to bring home the fifth Miss Universe crown for the Philippines, next to Gloria Diaz (1969), Margie Moran (1973), Pia Wurtzbach (2015), and Catriona Gray (2018). She made it to the Top 21 of the competition, but failed to advance to the next round.
Andrea Meza of Mexico was crowned Miss Universe, followed by Julia Gama of Brazil (first runner-up), Janick Maceta of Peru (second runner-up), Adline Castelino of India (third runner-up), and Kimberly Jimenez of Dominican Republic (fourth runner-up).
The 69th edition of the pageant was held on Monday, May 17 at the Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino in Hollywood, Florida, United States. Miss Universe 2012 Olivia Culpo and actor Mario Lopez hosted the prestigious affair.
Article thumbnails from Rabiya Mateo's Instagram account