PH leads race to host 2016 Miss Universe, says Pia

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Apr 15 2016 07:10 AM | Updated as of Apr 15 2016 07:17 AM

MANILA – While nothing is on paper yet, Miss Universe 2015 Pia Wurtzbach revealed that the Philippines is the frontrunner to host this year's edition of the international pageant.

"It's not a closed deal yet but I am actively campaigning for it," the 26-year-old Wurtzbach said in an exclusive interview on "Tonight with Boy Abunda" Thursday.

"Every chance that I get to speak to the media, whenever I have the microphone, I always tell them that me, the whole Miss Universe organization, and [Miss Universe President] Paula Shugart– all of us, we want the pageant here in the Philippines," she added.

Wurtzbach continued: "How do we make that happen? We need the nod of the government, we need the help of the private sectors, we need sponsors, we need people to get involved and be interested and reach out and help us."

"Let us unite and make it happen here because we want to do it here. It would be such a pleasure for me to pass on the crown here in the Philippines. It would be great for the tourism. And also, it's about time that we did it here," she concluded.

The last time the country hosted the Miss Universe was back in 1994. Charlene Gonzales, the now-wife of actor Aga Muhlach, represented the Philippines and finished in the top six. She also won special awards, such as Best in National Costume and Most Beautiful Hair.

In an interview with ABS-CBN News in January, Miss Universe president Paula Shugart said she believes that this is the right time to hold the international pageant in the Philippines.

“For years, I’ve talked about someday having the pageant here. I do know that with Pia (Wurtzbach) right now, the entire worldwide focus is on the Philippines. I think it’s a great opportunity. I would love to be able to make it work. We’ll see,” Shugart said.

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