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MAXINE Medina, the country’s bet to the 2016 Miss Universe beauty pageant, said last Tuesday night that she would be honored if President Rodrigo Duterte would really watch the prestigious contest live at the SM Mall of Asia in Pasay City on Jan. 30.
“I am very honored if our President would be there. He’ll be witnessing back-to-back (title),” said Medina, when asked if she would be nervous about the presence of the President in the audience, during press send-off held at the Novotel in Cubao, Quezon City.
Medina, 26, was also referring to the possible back-to-back win after Pia Wurtzbach was crowned 2015 Miss Universe in Las Vegas, Nevada in December 2015.
Tourism Secretary Wanda Teo has said that she has reserved a seat for President Duterte during the finals of the Miss Universe contest. She added that she would sit next to him.
But Duterte has yet to confirm his attendance at the pageant.
There are 86 contestants competing in the 65th edition of the Miss Universe contest. Asked about her closest rivals for the crown, Medina said: “Wala! We can do this!” (No one. We can do this).
The former fashion model said that she was excited that the Philippines will host the pageant instead of staging it elsewhere.
“Honestly, I just realized na it would be fulfilling for me to have it in the Philippines kasi everyone knows that I am fond of going outdoors,” said Medina.
“And I was surprised bigla na lang dito sa Philippines (ginanap) and we’re going around the country. It is my goal na before I go around the world, I would be touring the Philippines first,” the beauty queen from Quezon City said.
Medina said that she is ready to sacrifice for one year and live in New York if she would win the fourth crown for the Philippines.
“This is once in a lifetime and I will be devoting myself for this, for my country, for the Philippines, for the Filipinos. It is something that can really inspire them,” she said.
Asked about the good news she would like to share to her fellow candidates about the Philippines, Medina said: “We Filipinos are very resilient. We rise above the challenges in our lives. We can face all the tragedies and problems and that’s the most important thing that I can really be proud of as a Filipino.”
Marx Topacio, boyfriend of Medina, said that he is willing to wait for her girlfriend if she wins and stays in New York for one year.
“She’s an answered prayer. I prayed for a girlfriend like her. This is it,” said Topacio, boyfriend of the beauty queen for six years now.
Topacio admitted that he has wedding plans before Medina won the Binibining Pilipinas pageant last year.
But the actor put his wedding plans on hold when she won. He said that he will resume his wedding plans after the Miss Universe contest.
Topacio admired the determination of Medina in everything she does. “She’s very determined. If she wants it, she will get it.”
He said that he is ready to sacrifice for three weeks without her girlfriend who is competing for the pageant.
“I hope to see her during events. There’s one in Cebu where I will also participate. So maybe I will see her there,” Topacio said.
He admitted it is difficult to have a beauty queen for a girlfriend because of her busy schedule.
“But it’s okay. Time flies fast. I told her to focus on her career as a beauty queen. Before you know it, her term is finished. I am always here for her,” Topacio said.
Sought to give message to Medina, Topacio said: “Don’t change. I know you will not change. Take care your body and have enough rest. Just enjoy the moment because not everyone is given the same privilege.”
Topacio also said that he has given a souvenir for Medina on her journey to the Miss Universe pageant but he refused to reveal it.
The male model said that he has also bought a ticket to the Miss Universe contest and will watch it with his friend.