The controversy regarding third runner-up Miss Philippines Shamcey Supsup and her loss of the 2011 Miss Universe pageant crown continues as a representative for the Oprah Winfrey Network denies ownership of a widely-circulated statement attributed to Winfrey regarding Supsup's loss.
According to the statement, said to be attributed to Winfrey via NBC News, the media mogul said:
"I have reservations with the results. If the only basis is the Q and A portion, after having been trimmed down to five, Ms. Philippines deserved to win. What made her different from the rest is that she had no seconds to rethink of her answer, as she had no interpreter to break the ice. The rest had their interpreters and having breaks on seconds to think about their answers. Hands down, Ms. Philippines answered straight to the point."
However, a moderator of the Oprah Winfrey Network confirmed that Winfrey did not make the comment following an inquiry about it on the Oprah Winfrey website.
"There is no truth to the statement. Ms. Winfrey has not made any comments of this nature. Thank you for asking," read the moderator's statement.
There has been debate over Supsup's loss of the crown due to her "Love my God" answer during the Q&A portion of the contest.
Judge Vivica A. Fox asked Supsup if she would change her religion to marry the person she loved. Supsup answered:
"If I had to change my religious beliefs, I would not marry the person that I love because the first person that I love is God who created me and I have my faith and my principles and this is what makes me who I am."
She added, "And if that person loves me, he should love my God too."
Supsup has been a pageant favorite, ranking second in the swimsuit and evening gown votes.
Her fourth place finish has many asking whether her religious beliefs played a hand in the judges' decision.
Some fans took to Facebook to express their support for Supsup.
"I hope next year they will implement a new rule in Miss Universe that no more interpreter allowed in the competition so it will be fare [sic] to all and the whole world [will see] who's the beauty and BRAIN! Miss Philippines!" wrote Tzade Balois.
Vince Cabrera stated, "That is what you call BEAUTY and BRAIN…and with FEAR OF THE LORD! Perfect…'Charm is deceptive, and beauty is fleeting; but a woman who fears the Lord is to be praised.' Proverbs 31:30…Congrats Shams…"
However, not everyone agreed Supsup’s firm Christian stance to be applauded.
Another commenter on an article by GMA News Online, a news website for the Philippines television network GMA-7, Johnpaulreyes, said, "Funny how accepted it is to be prideful of ones [sic] religion…how it separates us to one another."
Supsup has spoken out about the pageant results telling ABS-CBN News:
"We are not the judges there, and I accepted the fact I’m third runner-up and I'm already happy. I think we should be happy also for Ms. Angola that she won, and I think that she also deserves the crown."
Supsup added, "In a competition there's [always] a winner. Someone will lose, someone will win. You should accept things for what they are. I think that's what makes a winner, not just the crown."