A contestant in the upcoming Miss Universe pageant, which will be held in Eilat, Israel on Dec. 13 (Philippine time), tested positive for COVID-19.
According to the Times of Israel, the contestant—who was later identified to be France’s Miss Universe delegate Clémence Botino—tested positive for the coronavirus upon her arrival in Israel over the weekend.
The Miss Universe Organization (MUO) said Botino is fully vaccinated and tested negative for COVID-19 before her departure in France.
She was taken to a government-run isolation facility.
Botino took to her Instagram page to confirm the news, saying she will stay in “lockdown for 10 days,” after which she will be tested again for the virus. She added that the MUO is “here to help and to take care of me.”
“I’m really tired, so I will take care of myself,” she said.
Botino also said, “Even if it is hard, I won’t give up. Life has brought me to Israel and everything is ready. Every situation are supposed to make us stronger.”
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“Don’t forget to be safe because the virus is still here. Thank you for your support and love you all.”
The MUO has yet to release an official statement regarding Botino’s fate in the 70th Miss Universe—though reports suggest that she may be allowed to participate in the pageant’s preliminary activities next week if she tests negative for the COVID-19 after her 10-day quarantine. Botino is among the early fan favorites in the competition.
The news of Botino testing comes after Israel banned all foreigners from entering the country due to the threat of the Omicron COVID-10 variant over the weekend, just as contestants of the Miss Universe pageant were starting to arrive. Israel’s tourism minister later announced that the Miss Universe pageant will push through in the country as planned. Majority of the delegates of the 70th Miss Universe pageant already arrived in Israel, the MUO said. - (Chuck Smith)