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Runner-up Mistakenly Crowned Miss Universe Winner

  • VOA Staff

Former Miss Universe Paulina Vega, center, removes the crown from Colombia's Ariadna Gutierrez, left, before giving it to the Philippines' Pia Alonzo Wurtzbach, right, at the pageant in Las Vegas, Nev., Dec. 20, 2015.

Former Miss Universe Paulina Vega, center, removes the crown from Colombia's Ariadna Gutierrez, left, before giving it to the Philippines' Pia Alonzo Wurtzbach, right, at the pageant in Las Vegas, Nev., Dec. 20, 2015.

Miss Philippines won this year's Miss Universe competition Sunday in Las Vegas, but Pia Alonzo Wurtzbach's crowning was delayed when host Steve Harvey mistakenly announced the first runner-up, Miss Colombia, as the winner.

Ariadna Gutierrez Arevalo initially was crowned and blew kisses to the audience for a few minutes on live television before Harvey returned to the stage with an apology. He said he took full responsibility for wrongly reading the card announcing the winner and the runners-up.


Wurtzbach, Miss Philippines, appeared stunned at the announcement as she walked up to Arevalo, who was still wearing the Miss Universe crown. Eventually, the crown was transferred to Wurtzbach.

Adding insult to injury, Harvey tweeted an apology in which he misspelled both Colombia and Philippines.

Photo - Twitter/IAmSteveHarvey

Photo - Twitter/IAmSteveHarvey


The mistakes were later corrected.

Olivia Jordan, from the U.S. western state of Oklahoma, was the second runner-up.

Presidential candidate Donald Trump and NBCUniversal were co-owners of the Miss Universe Organization until earlier this year. Trump made disparaging remarks about Mexican immigrants when he announced his bid for president, causing Spanish language network Univision to pull out from broadcasting Miss Universe and NBC to cut business ties with Trump.

The pageant aired on the Fox network.

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