Philippine candidate Rabiya Mateo has arrived in Los Angeles, California in the United States, and said is ready to vie for the Philippines' fifth Miss Universe crown.
On Instagram, modelling agency Aces & Queens, Mateo’s training camp, posted a photo of Mateo arriving in the Los Angeles Airport after leaving the country last Friday.
In another video clip taken by ABS-CBN News’ Steve Angeles, the Philippine bet from Iloilo vowed to give her best and make the Filipinos proud in the prestigious beauty pageant.
“Sa mga kababayan ko sa Pilipinas, nandito na ako ngayon sa Los Angeles. Pinapangako ko na gagawin ko lahat ng posibleng gawin para maiuwi ulit natin ang korona sa bayan,” she said.
Mateo also asked for her countrymen to include her in their prayers as she competes for the Miss Universe crown.
“Mahal ko kayo, at please po ipagdasal n’yo ako at suportahan sa laban na ito,” Mateo added.
The 69th Miss Universe pageant will be held in Hollywood, Florida on May 16 (May 17 morning in Manila).
While it will be held this year, the competition is technically crowning its 2020 winner. The pageant, as well as its country counterparts, had been delayed numerous times due to the coronavirus pandemic.
Mateo is the first Miss Universe Philippines titlist to be fielded by the new namesake organization, which had acquired the national license of the pageant formerly held by Binibining Pilipinas Charities, Inc. for half a century.
The Philippines has so far produced four Miss Universe winners: Gloria Diaz in 1969, Margie Moran in 1973, Pia Wurtzbach in 2015, and Catriona Gray in 2018.