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Ilongga wins Miss Universe Philippines 2020 crown

Miss Universe Philippines Rabiya Mateo. | Photo from Miss Universe Philippines 20202

CEBU CITY, Philippines— Iloilo City’s Rabiya Mateo is Miss Universe Philippines 2020

The prestigious pageant was held at the Baguio Country Club today, October 25, 2020.

The 24-year-old Ilonnga bested 45 other candidates.

Aside from her elegant look and her confidence, Mateo stood out among the other candidates as she bravely answered her final question.

Read: Miss U PH: Miss Mandaue bags Best in Costume with ‘bibingka’-inspired ensemble

“If you could create a new paper currency with the image of any Filipino on it, dead or alive, who would it be and why?”

She answered with her head held high and honored another famous political figure from Iloilo, Miriam Defensor Santiago.

“If I were given the chance, I want to use the face of Miriam Defensor Santiago. For those who don’t know, she was an Ilongga, but what I admired about her is that she used her knowledge, her voice, to serve the country. And I want to be somebody like her: somebody who puts her heart, her passion into action. And after all, she is the best president that we never had,” she answered.

With her brave and truthful answer, Mateo to no surprise won over the hearts of the crowd and the judges to bag the Miss Universe Philippines 2020 crown.

Mateo, who has an Indian father and a Filipina mother, is the second Miss Universe Philippines with Indian descent following Miss Universe fourth-runner up Venus Raj.

This Ilonga beauty is also a cum laude graduate with a Bachelor of Science degree in Physical Therapy from Iloilo Doctors College.

Miss Parañque Ysabella Ysmael is the first runner up in the pageant while Miss Quezon City Michele Gumabao is the second runner up./dbs

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