The results are in and Rachel Peters is Miss Universe Philippines 2017!
Rachel Peters, who grew up in Camarines Sur, beat 39 other hopefuls in a glitzy hours-long pageant focused on finding a “complete” queen in the vein of the wildly popular Pia Wurtzbach, the country’s first Miss Universe title-holder in over four decades.
Following the reveal, Peters, who called for unity amidst a tough time for the Philippines, was visibly in shock as the outgoing winner Maxine Medina crowned her and the crowd cheered at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.
In the Q&A round, Peters acknowledged the growing divisiveness between Filipinos in recent years, buoyed by heated debates on hot-button issues such as the reimposition of the death penalty and the government’s bloody crackdown on illegal drugs.
“I believe that one of the biggest problems of our country is divisiveness: in politics, religion, and culture,” she said when asked about her message to the world leaders who visited the recent ASEAN Summit held over the weekend.
“I believe it is same across the world and that is something I would like to address. If we can learn to tolerate each other’s differences and respect each other, then we will be a stronger nation going forward,” she argued.
Peters succeeds Maxine Medina, who fell short in winning back-to-back Miss Universe titles for the Philippines early this year. Medina, who faced heavy criticism over her public-speaking skills, said she was happy with the result and congratulated Peters.
The Binibining Pilipinas 2017 winners were announced at the pageant’s coronation night on Sunday, April 30, at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.
Here are the queens who will represent the Philippines in the international pageants:
- Miss Universe Philippines 2017: #19 Rachel Peters
- Bb Pilipinas International 2017: #15 Mariel de Leon
- Bb Pilipinas Intercontinental 2017: #31 Katarina Rodriguez
- Bb Pilipinas Globe 2017: #18 Nelda Ibe
- Bb Pilipinas Grand International 2017: #39 Elizabeth Durado Clenci
- Bb Pilipinas Supranational 2017: #22 Chanel Olive Thomas
- 1st runner-up: #32 Charmaine Elima
- 2nd runner-up: #40 Kristel Guelos (V. Garcia, abs-cbn)