Philippines' Rabiya Mateo leads Miss Universe 2020 polls; India, Brazil hit by travel bans
Miss Universe Philippines 2020 Rabiya Mateo
Jerick Sanchez, Rabiya Mateo

Philippines' Rabiya Mateo leads Miss Universe 2020 polls; India, Brazil hit by travel bans

Earl D.C. Bracamonte (Philstar.com) - April 28, 2021 - 12:56pm

MANILA, Philippines — At the Miss Universe 2020 competition in USA, a few more candidates trickled in on the arrivals list. 

Apart from Miss Universe Indonesia 2020 RR Ayu Maulida and Miss Universe Thailand 2020 Amanda Obdam who arrived yesterday, Cambodia's Sarita Reth arrived in the US a few days before. Miss Universe Laos 2020 Christina Lasasimma is scheduled to fly tomorrow. In total, there are now eleven candidates in mainland USA including the Philippines, El Salvador, Colombia, Iceland, Curacao, Canada, Aruba and USA's Asya Branch.

On the "Up Close and Personal" introduction video of the candidates posted on the Miss Universe page, Miss Universe Philippines 2020 Rabiya Mateo leads the fan votes with, so far, 616,000 likers and counting. She is followed by Thailand's Amanda Obdam with 577,000, Indonesia's RR Ayu Maulida with 87,000, Vietnam's Nguyen Khanh Van Tran with 79,000, Cambodia's Sarita Reth with 72,000, and India's Adline Castelino with 54,000.

After testing positive for COVID-19 and undergoing the 14-day required quarantine protocol, Miss Universe India 2020 Adline Castelino tested negative after her self-confinement. It is hoped that Miss Universe Argentina 2020 Alina Luz Akselrad, who also tested positive around the same time as Adline, will also come out of her quarantine testing negative.

In an Instagram post, Adline wrote, "Reporting from home - Yes! I tested negative for Covid. Feels so great. Thank you for all your wishes and prayers. Please stay at home and wear your mask properly if you have no (other) option but to step out. These two weeks were very challenging, mentally and emotionally for me, being positive, and looking at the bright side really helps. Reach out to people around you, especially elders. If you can help, and if you have just recovered, and eligible to donate plasma, kindly do it!"

In a televised news interview, Philippine Ambassador to the US Jose Romualdez said, "The US has now barred entry of Indian and Brazilian citizens to the US." And in a related news story, BBC reported that India is experiencing the worst second wave of the pandemic, with 1 in every 4 cases dying in the capital city, New Delhi.

It is unclear right now how this news bulletin could affect the participation of candidates from India and Brazil to the 69th Miss Universe competition on May 16 in Florida.

Stay tuned for more updates and announcements in the weeks and days leading to the coronation night.

RELATED: ‘I live in a cruel industry’: Rabiya Mateo shows real self on road to Miss Universe 2020

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