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The Touching Story About How Rabiya Mateo's Mom Watched Her *Winning Moment*

'Noong nakita ko yung photo na 'yan, parang doon ko naramdaman na nanalo na talaga ako.'

During a livestream of Ashtie Nights on pageant mentor and fashion designer Bessie Besana's Youtube Channel, Rabiya Mateo, this year's Miss Universe Philippines, shared the touching story behind *that* photo of her mom (who is currently in the province) in front of a television: 

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Rabiya explained why her mom wasn't with her in the city: "As much as I want my mom to be here with me, experiencing my success, hindi talaga puwede kasi yung mama ko medyo old na rin siya. And dito sa Manila mataas na rin yung case ng COVID-19, so I cannot risk that." 

"So yung nangyari po kasi wala kaming TV ngayon sa bahay. Wala rin kaming stable internet access. So pumunta po siya sa bahay ng classmate ko...and doon siya nakinood," Rabiya said, teary-eyed. "And noong nakita ko yung photo na 'yan, parang doon ko naramdaman na nanalo na talaga ako." 

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In previous interviews, Rabiya talked about how her family struggled financially while she was growing up and how she was raised by a single mom. The Ashtie Nights hosts recalled that during Rabiya's first guesting on their show, she said that if her life was going to be a Maalala Mo Kaya episode, it would be called "TV." When Rabiya was a child, they didn't have a television growing up and when she got her first salary, she immediately went to an appliance center to look at TV sets!

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Rabiya added: "Noong nananalo kasi ako, hindi ako agad makapag-message kay mama, because with all the controversies and intrigues, hindi ko alam kung paano 'yon sasabihin sa kanya." She kept apologizing during the livestream for being emotional. The show's hosts assured her: "Yung mga intrigues after the crown, right now they're inconsequential kasi I think the people now see why you won. And no one can question that moving forward."

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When she won Miss Universe Philippines, aside from receiving the Filipina crown, ABS-CBN reports that Rabiya also won a brand-new car, a cash prize, and an apartment.


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