‘Stay tuned for real-time updates from the Miss Universe 2023 event!’
MANILA, Philippines — Pakistan is fielding its first-ever delegate to the Miss Universe pageant this year, more than seven decades since the global tilt’s inception. And gunning for a win on a debut participation may be no mean feat, but still possible. In fact, other than the contest’s first edition, it has already happened.
Erica Robin is making history as the first woman to shout “Pakistan” in the Miss Universe pageant’s introduction of delegates. She is confident that she can pull off a win for her country’s rookie year, hoping to duplicate Botswana’s 1999 win with their first entry, Mpule Kwelagobe.
Pakistan’s neighbor India has been making great strides in international pageantry, scoring multiple wins in both the Miss World and Miss Universe pageants. Robin surmised that the Indian success may be attributed to how they celebrate and embrace their culture and beauty.
“India is a country rich in culture, and they celebrate women. They empower, they know the importance of women. And other countries can learn from such an amazing culture, how it should be celebrated, embraced, and empowered,” she continued.
Robin said she will share her own story as she tries to capture the title. “I think I should be the next Miss Universe because, coming from a third world country, from a minority, being neglected or ignored by the society, I can be a voice,” she said.
“Imagine women all around the universe, they’re gonna get empowered, and they will come out of their comfort zone, and make wonders. So that’s why I believe that I should be the next Miss Universe, to be the change,” she continued.
Robin said she believes breaking into the Miss Universe stage will open so many doors for Pakistanis. “So our time has just started. And every year, step by step, we will be there where it needs to be. So we will be there in the next few years.”
The Pakistani model said she found herself “fortunate” to be her country’s first Miss Universe delegate. “I just want to make sure that I just do not represent myself, but all the other women, not just in my country but all around the world, with limited opportunities, with hurdles and challenges, to just be there, confident, and just conquer the world,” she declared.
Robin is fielded by Dubai-based marketing practitioner and magazine publisher Josh Yugen, the franchise holder and national director of the Miss Universe pageant in Pakistan, Bahrain and Egypt. She trained in the Philippines, and even wore Filipino designer Furne Amato’s gown in the competition.
She is competing against 83 other aspirants, including the Philippines’ Michelle Dee, for the Miss Universe title. The winner will be crowned at the Jose Adolfo Pineda Arena in San Salvador, El Salvador, on Nov. 18 (Nov. 19 in Manila).