Kenyan representative in the 2016 Miss Universe competition, Mary Esther Were, emerged position six in a gala held on Monday, January 30 in The Philippines, beating 79 of the world’s most beautiful women. Miss France, Iris Mittenaere – who is a dental student –, took out the title.
Entrants from Colombia and Haiti rounded out the top three.
Despite the stellar performance, pundits and sections of online users argue Mary Esther Were could have done better had she not made a statement that “painted United States President Donald Trump in bad light” during the 65th Miss Universe pageant.
The pageant was formerly owned by President Donald Trump and it is now backed by Hollywood mega-agencies.
Miss Kenya was asked about US politics and she suggested Trump’s election win “may not have been the choice of many people living in the United States”.
“Arguably no US president has had a more active 10 days in office. What are you most excited about and what concerns you when it comes to the Presidency of Donald Trump?” asked host Steve Harvey.
Kenya’s Mary Esther Were responded: “Politics … ahh OK let me just start again. Donald Trump, having been elected as the President of the United States, may not have been the choice of many people living in the United States because of the divided support system for the outgoing President Barack Obama, who was supporting an upcoming woman President … who was supposed to be a woman President Hillary Clinton,” she said, implying Hillary Clinton should have won the November 8, 2016 Presidential poll.
“So, so many people oppose his position. But I feel that once (Trump) took up his position, he was able to unify the entire nation.”
Unfortunately that response didn’t sit well with the judges, as she was immediately eliminated before heading into the finals.
Arguably the fan favourite of Miss Universe 2016, alongside Miss Haiti, Twitter users were left fuming after Mary Esther Were was eliminated.
Many believe she was robbed of the crown because of the Donald question! Former US President Barack Obama is her idol, and she pointed out that she loves how Obama handles criticism from different quotas.
Despite not making it to top three, Mary Esther Were is still a positive role model for women around the world.
Mary Esther Were is not only a successful model. She also works as a marketing administrator for CNBC and Forbes Africa! Mary considers herself an “alpha-female” who chases after her dreams like there’s no tomorrow!
When host Steve Harvey was introducing the women, we couldn’t help but fall in love with Mary’s personal message. She said that we shouldn’t be defined by material things or what we wear, and believes there are no limitations in life. What a great role model!
Miss France was crowned Miss Universe on Monday in a made-for-television spectacle free of last year’s dramatic mix-up but with a dash of political controversy as the finalists spoke out on the refugee crisis and other hot-button global issues.
France representative Iris Mittenaere, 24, beat 85 of the world’s most beautiful women at the event in The Philippines.
In the final question round, Iris Mittenaere highlighted the benefits of open borders when asked about the global refugee crisis.
“In France we want to have the most globalisation that we can. We want to have the biggest exchange of people that we can. Maybe someday that will change but now we have open borders,” Mittenaere said.
Monday’s show was headlined by US performers including Grammy award-winning rhythm and blues group Boyz II Men and rapper and Grammy award nominee Flo Rida.
Pia Wurtzbach of the Philippines won last year following a major blunder in which the host – Emmy Award winner Steve Harvey – mistakenly awarded the title to Miss Colombia.
Additional reporting by Agencies.