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Mara Topic is Ecuador’s new Miss Universe;  Contestant Yajaira Quizhpi, 46, did not make the top 13

Mara Topic is Ecuador’s new Miss Universe; Contestant Yajaira Quizhpi, 46, did not make the top 13

(CNN in Spanish) — The Miss Universe jury has chosen Ecuadorian Mara Topic, 29, from Guayaquil, to be the country’s representative at the Miss Universe International contest to be held in Mexico.

Mara Topic Verduja works as a film director and producer, according to information provided by the competition to CNN.

Topic is the sister of former Ecuadorian presidential candidate Jean Topic, who is running for the 2023 elections and who attended the beauty pageant on Saturday night, where she posted messages of support for her sister on her X account.

“Congratulations baby! Such pride! Now with everything to Mexico,” books.

First runner-up was Nadia Mejia, a 28-year-old Ecuadorian American born in California. Mejia is the daughter of Ecuadorian rapper Gerardo Mejia, who has lived in the United States for several years. Nadia Mejia was Miss California USA 2016 and represented the US community on Saturday after the pageant made changes to representation by county, city or region.

Candidate Yajaira Quizpe, at 46 years old, the oldest woman to participate in this competition in Ecuador, was unable to enter the top 13 in the preliminary selection of the competition.

Yajaira Quizhpi competes in the Miss Universe Ecuador pageant in Guayaquil, Ecuador, on June 4, 2024. @CNBecuador/Giancarlo Ambrossi

The Ecuadorian Miss Universe contest has focused special attention in 2024, as there is no longer an age limit for participation, which is why it has its first 46-year-old contestant, Quizpe, a chemical engineer born in the city of Azoges. , in Kanyar Province, is the mother of an 11-year-old boy.

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A few days ago, Yajaira Quizpe told CNN she was proud to participate in a more inclusive competition.

“Organizations have transformed and are joining in with the changes to promote inclusion. I feel honored to be allowed to be here. We have broken barriers, and as women, we can move forward without fear of what they will say,” Quispe said.

The elections were held on Saturday in Zoila Ugarte Park in the city of Machala in El Oro department, a town located nine hours from Quito. The current Miss Universe, Nicaraguan Shenice Palacios, attended the ceremony at the invitation of the organization.

Miss Universe Ecuador, like other beauty pageants in other countries, is going through a different moment since the Miss Universe International organization amended certain rules in order to promote a more inclusive and diverse pageant.

Seven mothers participated in the competition that took place on Saturday in Ecuador: three divorced women with children, three married women with children, one married woman with no children, and one candidate with a daughter, according to data provided by the competition to CNN.