Miss Philippines Crowned Miss Universe After Host Steve Harvey Mix-up
Miss Colombia was wrongly named Miss Universe in a dramatic mix-up in front of a global television audience of millions on Sunday, before the rightful winner Miss Philippines was finally handed the glittering crown. The pageant’s host, US comedian Steve Harvey, misread his cue card and initially announced Miss Colombia, Ariadna Gutierrez, had triumphed.
She was fleetingly crowned and congratulated at the ceremony in Las Vegas and started waving to fans. But as she blew kisses to an adoring crowd, Harvey was forced to come clean and announce the real winner.
“OK folks, I have to apologize. The first runner up is Colombia.“
“Miss Universe 2015 is Philippines,” he added as the music began anew, with the actual winner, Pia Alonzo Wurtzbach — a high-profile actress and television host — looking stunned and mouthing “what?” Harvey attempted to explain the error to a perplexed audience, who greeted the news with both cheers and boos.
“This is exactly what’s on the card. I will take responsibility for this. It was my mistake, it was on the card,” he said.
“It was my mistake, still a great night,” added the talk show host, saying the audience should not “hold it against the ladies”.
The glittering crown was then promptly placed on Wurtzbach’s head. She later told reporters she wished Miss Colombia the best.
“I’m very sorry, I did not take the crown from her and I wish her well in whatever she wants to pursue after this pageant,” she said.
In the Philippines, celebrations broke out despite the gaffe. The presidential palace led the nation in hailing the victory of the German-Filipino model, who this year fuelled gossip of a relationship with 55-year-old President Benigno Aquino by saying they were friends and that “he’s very fun to talk to”.
“We congratulate her for this success as the third Miss Universe of the Philippines,” Aquino’s spokesman Edwin Lacierda said in a statement.
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