MANILA, Philippines – Miss Universe 2012 first runner-up Janine Tugonon and Miss Tourism International 2012 Rizzini Alexis Gomez paid a courtesy call on President Benigno Aquino III on Wednesday.
The President welcomed the beauty queens at the Music Room of the Malacañang Palace.
Gomez was with Mutya ng Pilipinas president Jacqueline Tan, while Tugonon was with Stella Marquez-Araneta, chairperson of the Bb. Pilipinas Charities, Inc.
Gomez bested 55 candidates worldwide vying for the 16th Miss Tourism International crown. She was the second Filipina to win the title after Maria Esperanza clinched the crown in 2000.
Tugonon, on the other hand, placed second to Miss USA in the most recent Miss Universe pageant held at the Planet Hollywood Resort and Casino in Las Vegas, Nevada last December 19.
Tugonon's runner-up feat is the best finish of the Philippines in the pageant in over a decade.
The country's last best finish was the first runner-up win of Miriam Quiambao in 1999. Venus Raj and Shamcey Supsup finished fourth and third runner-up, respectively, in 2010 and 2011.
The country is still hoping to produce its third Miss Universe winner after Gloria Diaz in 1969 and Margie Moran in 1973.