What matters is that she had fun and did her best during her performance.
What happened to the headpiece?
Rabiya wasn't able to wear the sun-inspired headpiece, which would have completed her Philippine-flag-inspired national costume, designed by the late fashion designer Rocky Gathercole. Miss Universe PH National Director Shamcey Supsup revealed that the headpiece kept falling off, and that's why they decided to go with what would make Rabiya more comfortable. Rabiya also went on IG live to address the comments.
Closing the chapter, in an Instagram post on May 14, Rabiya declared that “Tonight was a good night. I had fun. That’s what really matters.”
View this post on Instagram
Following her post was an outpouring of love, support, and good vibes from her competitors, and other Filipina beauty queens. Miss Thailand Amanda Obdam, who became Rabiya's friend in the pageant, sent a short but sweet “You’re beautiful.”
Binibining Pilipinas Supranational 2013 and Miss Supranational 2013 Mutya Datul also replied with words of encouragement. “Raise your flag our queen is arrived! Mabuhay ang Pilipinas!”
Miss Universe Philippines 2020 3rd runner-up Pauline Amelinckx also commented. “You were wonderful. We could see that you enjoyed. Like you said ‘i'm gonna fly’ and YOU DID! @rabiyamateo”
“My langga, laban na to bukassss AGGGHHHHHHHHH,” says Miss Universe Philippines 2014 MJ Lastimosa.
Binibining Pilipinas International 2016 and Miss International 2016 Kylie Verzosa also praised the Ilongga beauty queen. “You did so well, and we are so proud of you baby girl!! Bring home the crown!”
Miss Philippines Earth 2015 and Miss Earth 2015 Angelia Ong also encouraged Rabiya to keep fighting. “You were amazing on that stage my dear. Di lang magpadala sa iban. Laban lang"
Miss Universe Philippines 2016 Maxine Medina also chimed in. "Keep it up we are proud of you go go go!!! @rabiyamateo"
"Ganda!!," says Miss Universe Philippines 2020 2nd runner-up Michele Gumabao to Rabiya, with whom she previously competed with.
The grand coronation of Miss Universe 2020 will take place on May 16, 2021 (May 17 in the PH) at Seminole Hard Rock & Casino in Hollywood, Florida.
This story originally appeared on Pep.ph and has been traslated from Filipino to English.
* Minor edits have been made by the Candymag.com editors.