Miss Grand Philippines Roberta Tamondong has been officially announced by the MGI organization as the new Miss Grand International 2022 fifth runner-up.
The 20-year-old environmental awareness advocate was part of the Top 20 semi-finalists during the Miss Grand International 2022 final competition in Jakarta, Indonesia on October 25. She replaced the “Miss Popular Vote” winner and Top 10 finalist Yuvna Rinishta of Mauritius, who refused to sign a contract and resigned due to personal reasons.
Roberta seemed to have accepted the replacement offer after posting the announcement on her social media and changing her bio. She is now expected to join the rest of the Top 10 in Bangkok, Thailand to assume the duties and responsibilities that come with her new position and also be part of the pageant’s 10th-year anniversary world tour.
Amid the announcement, MGI has been receiving backlash from Vietnamese and Filipino fans calling the competition a “cooking show” and has also been the subject of criticism from the pageant community due to the “unnecessary” and “provoking” video graphics showing MGI crushing MU which appeared during the final show’s broadcast.
MGI President Nawat Itsaragrisil, who was also slammed for “body shaming” the Vietnamese representative, defended his 10-year-old “grand the one and only” international beauty competition that boasts undeniable glossy and spectacular production and asserted it is not at all rigged and unfair. He also revealed the controversial video was only a retaliation for the Miss Universe lawsuit against MGI years ago and at the same time called out former Miss Universe Leila Lopes of Angola for publicly labeling his pageant a “circus” show.
As of this writing, MGI followers’ count on Instagram appears to have dropped down to 4.1 million after significantly losing over 2 million followers in less than a week. The Miss Universe Organization has on its part remained unbothered and just celebrated reaching over 5 million followers, and announcing a new owner who also happens to be based in Thailand.
In case you missed it, here’s the controversial video:
Photos: Miss Grand International