MANILA, Philippines – After doing a series of interviews in New York, Miss Universe 2015 Pia Wurtzbach sat down for her first interview with Philippine media, talking about the effigy issue in Colombia and coming home to the Philippines.
In an interview aired on ABS-CBN's Umagang Kay Ganda, Tuesday, January 5, Pia said she heard the news about the effigy and admitted to being surprised about it. But before reacting to the incident, she did her research.
"Nabalitaan ko 'yun at saka nung nag research ako ng kaunti, nalaman ko na part pala ng tradition nila na every New Year, sinusunog nila yung bad memories para hindi na maulit sa susunod na bagong taon. Kaya sa akin kung hindi ako sanay sa ganung tradition, parang medyo bago siya para sa akin… iyan ang kinaganda ng Miss Universe, may matutunan ka tungkol sa mga customs ng ibang mga bansa. 'Yung iba medyo nakakagulat pero ganun talaga," she said.
(I heard about it and when I did my research, I found out it was part of their tradition that every New Year, they burn bad memories so these won't happen again. So if I'm not used to it, it's definitely new for me... that's what's good about Miss Universe, you learn the different customs of other countries. There are others that are very surprising, but that's how it is.)
Over the weekend, a Colombian named Noider Almanza Barraza was criticized online after posting a video of effigies dressed as Pia and Miss Universe host Steve Harvey being burned. Many Filipino netizens reacted, saying the Colombians were still bitter about not winning the Miss Universe crown, following Harvey's mistake of announcing Colombia's Ariadna Gutierrez as the winner during the pageant's coronation night on December 20.
Homecoming in the Philippines
Meanwhile, Pia said that she's looking forward to her homecoming in the Philippines very soon. However, she is not yet sure when she will be back due to her hectic schedule as the new title holder.
What a busy day! I'm loving being able to share all of this with each and every one of you. # #MissUniverse -Pia A video posted by Pia Alonzo Wurtzbach (@missuniverse) on Jan 4, 2016 at 3:14pm PST
"But once I find out, I will let everybody know for sure," Pia said.
She added: "Naku, excited na rin ako, and sa tingin ko diyan ako maiiyak talaga pag nakauwi na ako, kasi na mimiss ko na ang Pilipinas eh. Parang ang tagal ko nang hindi nakakauwi. Parang 'yun yung feeling ko… pero excited na ako. I don’t know what to expect really pero sana malapit na [akong umuwi]."
(I'm very excited and I think I'll cry when I go home, because I really miss the Philippines. I haven't been home in a long time. That's what I feel... but I'm very excited. I don't know what to expect, but I hope I can go home soon.)
If there is one food Pia misses in the Philippines, it would definitely be pandesal (bread).
"Kailangan bagong luto 'yun. Kailangan mainit-init pa at saka meron recipe iyan. Hindi mo naman magagawa iyan dito kung hindi aalsa ng maayos. Yung palaman Cheez Whiz, mga ganun," Pia said laughing.
(it should be freshly baked. It must be hot and there's a recipe for it. You cannot just do it here because it will not taste good if not baked properly. It has to have spreads, like Cheez Whiz, stuff like that.)
Pia also said that she's grateful to the friends she made in the pageant who spoke up and defended her during the controversy. She also thanked her family and friends, especially beauty camp Aces and Queens led by Jonas Gaffud, who trained her for the competition.
"I hope that I made you proud and this is the fruit of our labor and 'yun masaya lang ako. (I'm very happy). They were my family away from family. And of course Binibining Pilipinas is also instrumental to my victory," she said.
As for her message to Filipinos worldwide, Pia said: "Mga kababayan, maraming salamat po sa pagsuporta at pagboto ninyo sa akin. Mga kakababayan ko diyan sa Pilipinas at sa buong mundo, maraming salamat na inabangan ninyo yung Miss Universe at tinulungan niyo ako na maka-advance sa bawat part ng competition. Malaking tulong yung suporta niyo sa akin. Sana napasaya ko po kayo and iyon lang po talaga ang importante sa akin na maging proud kayo sa akin at mapatunayan ko na I deserve to be Miss Universe Philippines and I will win Miss Universe. And yung pagkapanalo ko dinededicate ko sa inyong lahat, inaalay ko sa inyo. Excited na ako umuwi, magkita-kita po tayo soon."
(To my fellow countrymen, thank you so much for the support and votes you gave to me. To my fellow countrymen in the Philippines and the whole world, thank you for watching Miss Universe and helping me advance to every part of the competition. Your support was a big help to me. I hope I made you happy and that's what's important for me, that you are proud of me, and I prove that I deserve to be Miss Universe Philippines, and that I will win Miss Universe. And I dedicate my win to all of you. I'm very excited to go home and I will see you all soon.) – Rappler.com