Miss Universe Philippines directors have reacted to Beatrice Luigi Gomez’s trending Q&A performance at the recently concluded 70th edition of the pageant, noting that she expressed herself well considering the complexity of the question.
During the segment, Gomez was asked by Miss Universe 2016 Iris Mittenaere about her thoughts on mandating a universal vaccine passport. The Pinay beauty answered: “I believe that public health is everyone’s responsibility and to mandate vaccine inoculation is necessary. If mandating vaccine passport would help us in regulating the rollout of vaccine and mitigate the situation of the pandemic today, then I would agree on mandating the necessary passport vaccination. Thank you.”
Her response instantly became a hot topic online, with some netizens pointing it out as the reason why Gomez did not proceed to the Top 3.
In an interview on ANC Headstart, MUP directors Voltaire Tayag and Jonas Gaffud reacted to Gomez’s answer, saying that Bea did a good job overall considering that she had to weigh in on the controversial matter in just a short period of time.
Tayag admitted that they felt she could have done better with delivery, but found it good enough when they read her answer in-depth. “She made her point. Whether you agree with her or not, that was her point and she expressed it well,” he said.
“Could it have been better expressed? Yes, but at the end of the day, we were happy and we were so proud that she was able to do it,” added Tayag, who is the MUP director of communication.
Gaffud, for his part, said that if she was given more time to answer the challenging question, she could have performed better. “If you have five minutes at least to answer that, maybe you can at least debate with someone but in 30 seconds, that would be difficult talaga.”
Gaffud also drew attention on how netizens can be so hard even on the country’s very own bets like Gomez. “You can’t really understand how people would treat you on social media. Like now, a lot of people are praising her, but prior to that, a lot of people were bashing her,” the MUP national director said.
For instance, Gomez was bashed when she was seen in a tracksuit outfit in a now-deleted snap with Miss Universe Thailand Anchilee Scott-Kemmis, who was looking all glammed up from head to toe in pink. Apparently, it was because of a luggage mishap during Gomez’s Jerusalem trip.
“I don’t know how people could be so unforgiving with these young women trying to just reach for their dreams. They just want to help their families, to go further in life, and then they’re being bashed for being ‘big,’ ‘they don’t know how to walk,’ ‘they don’t know how to answer’—and these are young women. They’re not accomplished like in their 50s. They’re very young, trying to learn things in this world and want to be someone and they just have to be strong,” said Gaffud.
Right before the Miss U finals, Tayag recalled how they let go of Gomez by fully trusting her capabilities. “That was the moment when as a coach, as a person who cares about this young woman, you hold back from wanting to give more information, wanting to give more instructions. That’s where you’re just like ‘Hey, we believe in you,’ ‘Hey, we’re here for you,’ ‘Hey, you’re good enough,’” he shared.
“I think that’s what I love about the MUP Organization because it’s very important to recognize when it’s time to coach, when it’s time to nurture.”
The Miss Universe 2021 pageant was held on Dec. 13 in Eilat, Israel. Gomez tried to take home the fifth Miss U crown, but ended her journey in the top five. Catriona Gray, who was named Miss Universe in 2018, is still the last Pinay to bag the highly coveted title.