Miss Universe organization apologizes to Miss Kyrgyzstan for slip-up

By Dang Khoa   January 17, 2023 | 04:51 pm PT
The organizer of the Miss Universe competition and Miss Universe 2021 Harnaaz Sandhu apologized to the representative from Kyrgyzstan for mistakenly referring to the country as Kazakhstan.

The beauty pageant publicly apologized in a statement posted on the organization's YouTube channel.

"Our team is offering an apology to Kyrgyzstan for failing to correctly say the country’s name during the recent Preliminary event in New Orleans," it said. "Our team promises to do better."

Previously, in the national costume round on January 12, Harnaaz Sandhu played the role of host and mistakenly said Kazakhstan instead of Kyrgyzstan.

Miss Universe Kyrgyzstan Altynai Botoyarova. Photo courtesy of Miss Universe

Miss Universe Kyrgyzstan Altynai Botoyarova. Photo courtesy of Miss Universe

In a video posted on January 15, Miss Universe CEO Amy Emmerich apologized to Miss Universe Kyrgyzstan Altynai Botoyarova and the people of her country.

Botoyarova accepted the apology and thanked the organizers for acknowledging the mistake and committing to prevent similar incidents in the future.

Sandhu also took to social media to issue an apology to Botoyarova for the slip-up she made during the 71st Miss Universe national costume competition.

"During the preliminary event this week in New Orleans, I failed to properly say Kyrgyzstan," Harnaaz shared on her Instagram account. "I am deeply sorry for this mistake."

The Miss Universe pageant was held in New Orleans, Louisiana, with 84 contestants from around the world.

Vietnam's Nguyen Thi Ngoc Chau did not make it to the top 16.

Miss USA R'Bonney Gabriel, a model and sewing instructor, was crowned the 71st Miss Universe.

R'Bonney Gabriel is crowned the 71st Miss Universe. Video courtesy of FPT Play

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