Miss Universe Canada Declares Ex Pbb Contestant Riza Santos As Winner After Crowning The Wrong GirlHave you ever wondered what former Pinoy Big Brother contestant Riza Santos is up to these days? Well, she has been making the rounds of almost all prestigious beauty pageants in the planet. Come December, she will be competing in the 2013 Miss Universe. That means, there will be two Filipinas to be vying for the elusive crown.
Santos will be competing against fellow Filipina, Binibining Pilipinas Universe Ariella Arida. She is pure Filipina by blood but was naturalized as a Canadian citizen because she was raised in Calgary, Canada. Her parents hailed from Bulacan and Bataan. She has Filipino, Chinese, and Spanish ancestry.
Santos has been a bonafide beauty queen. In 2006, she competed and bagged the crown of Miss Earth-Canada, taking her to compete that same year in the Miss Earth beauty pageant, which was held in the Philippines. The experience helped her trace her roots. She eventually decided to stay in the country for a while.
Pinoy Big Brother
This could have led her to join the Pinoy Big Brother Celebrity Edition 2. She was declared as the second big winner. Her participation in the reality show made her a household name locally. After PBB, she appeared in several ABS-CBN shows like ‘ASAP’ and teleseryes ‘Palos’ and ‘I Love Betty La Fea.’ In local movies, she was Vic Sotto’s leading lady in ‘Dobol Trobol,’ which also starred the late comedy king Dolphy.
Santos was not spared from the harshness of local showbiz intrigues. Rumors circulated years ago about how she had some of her facial features and body parts enhanced by science. She was also rumored to be the new girlfriend of Viva Films big boss Vic del Rosario. Santos suddenly went on a hiatus from local show business.
Miss World pageant
The controversial Santos resurfaced when she won Miss World Canada and represented the North American country in the 2011 Miss World pageant, held in London. It was in the same pageant that fellow Filipina Gwendolyn Ruais, who was the Philippines’ representative then, almost bagged the crown and won the First Princess title. Santos lost in that competition.
After two years, Santos joined the 2013 Miss Universe Canada, which had its coronation night at the St. Lawrence Centre for the Arts in Toronto last May 25. She was declared as a runner-up that evening, when Denise Garrido was crowned the winner.
Wrong winner declared
In a twist of fate, Garrido only spent less than 24 hours in her throne. She was immediately dethroned the day after. Why? The organizers of the pageant, Beauties of Canada, discovered that there was a human error in the tabulation of the judges’ scores. The blunder placed Garrido’s name in the first instead of the fourth place.
Consequently, the organizers decided that it was just right to announce the real winner in the competition. And yes, it was the Calgary representative and Filipina beauty Santos. Beauties of Canada immediately informed Garrido about the error and gave a public apology. Luckily, Garrido simply took her embarrassing loss in a graceful stride.
Controversial Miss Universe Canada
This was the first time such an error happened in Miss Universe Canada’s 11-year history. It is a blunder that has taken attention not just of local media but also of international press. Ironically, the same Canadian pageant drew controversy in 2012 when a transgender woman was allowed to join but was later ejected from the competition because of her gender.
This year, Santos bested 52 other women who came from various locations in Canada. The 26-year old beauty queen has already started preparing for the upcoming Miss Universe, the 62nd year of the pageant to be held in still an unannounced venue.