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CHICAGO (JGL) – Filipino American artist Paul Cainto Balaan, who designed the gold medal former President Obama gave away to outstanding

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CHICAGO (JGL) -- When Steve Harvey hosted the 2015 Miss Universe, his eyes were not in the right place for misreading the name of the winner: reading the name of Miss

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(© 2015 Journal GlobaLinks)


CHICAGO (JGL) – Watching the Miss Universe beauty pageant Sunday, Dec. 20, on live television was like watching the dying seconds of a very close last round of a boxing match but the problem is that the referee read the wrong scoring card!

In one of the most bizarre and surreal endings of the Miss Universe finale, TV host Steve Harvey announced Miss Columbia Ariadna Gutierrez-Arévalo as the 2015 Universe winner.




Miss Philippines 2015 Pia Alonzo Wurtzbach (left) waits along with Miss Colombia 2015 Ariadna Gutierrez-Arevalo and Miss U.S.A. Oliva Jordan for the announcement of the first to be eliminated from the final round of the Miss Universe 2015 at Planet Hollywood in Las Vegas, Nevada on Sunday, Dec. 20. (JGL Photograb from Fox Chicago TV Footage)

But a few seconds later after reigning 2014 Miss Universe Paulina Vega crowned her country mate Miss Columbia Ariadna Gutierrez-Arévalo, Mr. Harvey trotted back to the stage to announce that there was a mistake.

Mr. Harvey clarified that the first runner up was Miss Colombia and that the winner of the Miss Universe 2015 is Miss Philippines Pia Alonzo Wurtzbach, who was shocked as did Miss Columbia, whose crown was being taken away from her head and was being moved over to the rightful head of Miss Wurtzbach.

The closest boxing controversial decision, though never reversed, that comes to mind was Timothy Bradley’s split decision over Filipino champion Manny Pacquiao in 2012, which was also held in Las Vegas, Nevada – at the MGM Grand Arena.



The scorecard of the Miss Universe from Push Alerts@Push_Alerts twitter account shows 2nd Runner Up USA, lst Runnder Up Colombia and Miss Universe 2015 Miss Philippines. (JGL Photograb from Push Alerts@Push_Alerts)

When he came back to the stage of Planet Hollywood in Las Vegas, Mr. Harvey flashed the scorecard, showing Miss USA as second runner up, Miss Colombia, first runner up and at the right corner of the score card, Miss Universe Miss Philippines, prompting an unbelieving and shocked Miss Philippines to amble in measured steps towards the center of the stage to await 2014 Miss Universe Paulina Vega crown her 2015 Miss Universe.

Because all the stage presentation was synchronized to the television time slot, Miss Universe Paulina Vega barely moved the crown on the Miss Philippines’ head before the unfolding drama abruptly went off the air.




Some watchers were questioning Mr. Harvey for playing favorites when he recklessly announced the wrong winner. Mr. Harvey later said, “I have to apologize. The (first) runner up is Miss Colombia. And Miss Universe 2015 is Miss Philippines!”

Had Miss Columbia won, it could have been the second back-to-back country winner since 2009 Miss Venezuela Stefania Fernandez was crowned by her country mate 2008 Miss Venezuela Dayana Mendoza, the 2008 Miss Universe.

The mistake caused Miss Colombia Ariadna Gutierrez-Arevalo to shed tears as she was being demoted from Miss Universe to first runner up.

A Filipino-German actress, model and beauty pageant titleholder, Ms. Wurtzbach was born in Stuttgart, Germany to a German father and a Filipino mother. But she claims Cagayan de Oro City in the Philippines, where she grew up, as her home. She speaks German, Filipino and English.

She has one sister who is two years younger than her. Pia finished her secondary education with the ABS-CBN Distance Learning Center and studied culinary arts at the Center for Asian Culinary Studies in Metro Manila, Philippines. She worked as a cosmetics model. At the age of 11, under the screen name Pia Romero, she worked as an actress. Pia is currently a stylist and writer for the lifestyle section of a leading newspaper in the Philippines.


At the question and answer portion, Pia gave a winning statement when asked, “Why should you be the next Miss Universe?

“To be a Miss Universe is both an honor and a responsibility. If I were to be Miss Universe, I will use my voice to influence the youth and I will raise awareness to certain causes like HIV awareness that is timely and relevant to my country, i.e. Philippines. I want to show the world—the Universe, rather—that I am confident and beautiful from the heart.”
Ms. Wurtzbach becomes the third Filipina to win the title since Gloria Diaz won in 1969, and Margie Moran took home the crown in 1973 at the 63rd year staging of the pageant.

Rounding up the top five were Philippines, France, Colombia, Australia and U.S.A.

On the first question-and-answer round which dealt with country-based questions on such hot-button issues, as the dangerous territory of US military presence in the Philippines, Ms. Wurtzbach said the Philippines is showing strong influences from the United States and that the Filipinos are welcoming the issue.

In his initial twit, Harvey said, “I want to apologize emphatically to Miss Philippians and Miss Columbia. This was a terribly honest human mistake and I am so regretful.” But he deleted this as he misspelled Philippines and Colombia.

Harvey, who has 3.07-million followers, later corrected it, saying, “I’d like to apologize wholeheartedly to Miss Colombia & Miss Philippines for my huge mistake. I feel terrible.

“Secondly, I’d like to apologize to the viewers at that I disappointed as well. Again it was an honest mistake.

“I don’t want to take away from this amazing night and pageant. As well as the wonderful contestants. They were all amazing.”

Harvey generated 167,000 likes and 107,000 re-twits.

It was the first time that the Miss Universe allowed online voting during the two-hour telecast only from Eastern and Central Time airings from 7:00 p.m. ET/6:00 CT for anyone 13 years of age or older who goes to http://www.missuniverse.com/vote. There were four (4) voting points that were voted upon -- during the swimsuit competition, during the evening gown competition, during the final question round, and after the final look.

In its post, the Miss Universe website said, “The excitement of live TV was evident tonight on The Miss Universe stage with over 10 million live fan votes tabulated. Unfortunately, a live telecast means that human error can come into play. We witnessed that tonight when the wrong winner was initially announced. Our sincerest apologies to Miss Universe Colombia 2015, Ariadna Gutierrez-Arévalo, Miss Universe Philippines 2015, Pia Alonzo Wurtzbach, their families and fans. We congratulate Miss Universe Philippines as Miss Universe 2015.” (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.)

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