MANILA — Miss Cavite Billie Hakenson considers herself “the happiest 4th runner-up,” after her top-five finish in the recently concluded Miss Universe Philippines pageant.
On Instagram on Wednesday, Hakenson shared a photo of her with Miss Universe Philippines winner Rabiya Mateo (Iloilo City), and 3rd runner-up Pauline Amelinckx (Bohol).
In its caption, Hakenson wrote: “I never expected to be part of the Top 5. And I’m still basking elation with my achievements. Of course, the crown was the goal. But I achieved more than the actual crown and title. I was heard, and people listened.”
Hakenson made headlines ahead of coronation day for her proud declaration of being a bisexual woman.
She similarly drew praise for her performance in the finals, particularly her answer as she entered the top 16, about how she intends to make a lasting, positive impact in society.
“I am not here to be a voice. I am here to amplify voices. Because we will not be silenced by fear anymore, We are here to be empowered by truth,” she said at the time.
In her Instagram post, Hakenson also addressed Mateo and Amelinckx, her “sisters” under the pageant training camp Aces & Queens.
“To @paulineamelinckx , my sentimental Ms. Universe. I love you. We’ve been together since the press presentation and to our “iyak sayaw” moment during the actual crowning of winners. Of course my heart was broken because I know how amazing you would have been as our queen but I know you will have your moment. And I will be there to witness that,” Hakenson said.
“To our Ms. Universe Ph, @rabiyamateo , our youngest A&Q sister, I appreciate the talk that we had, as well as the sincerity and honesty you showed during that said talk. I assure you that your ates (a.k.a. Queen's court) will protect you and help you as best as we can throughout your journey. You are my Queen, we are your court.”
Hakenson’s message to Mateo came amid intrigues hounding her coronation, with a candidate, Sandra Lemonon, seeking “justice” over allegations of “cheating,” which has yet to be detailed.