Miss Souphavady Phongsavanh has surrendered the crown of Miss World Laos 2021 following the controversy surrounding her legal age.
The beauty queen made an announcement on her personal Facebook page, which reads:
“I, Souphavandy Phongsavanh, Miss World Laos 2021, surrender my title as of today as I am unable to hold my position. I am unavailable to respond to questions at this time.”
The first line was followed by a folding-hands and sad face emoji.
“I apologize to the contest management and panel of judges who had entrusted this title to me. I thank all the people who sent me messages of support.”
Miss Souphavady Phongsavanh was selected as the new Miss World Laos on Wednesday evening, becoming the representative for Laos at the Miss World 2021 pageant to be held in Puerto Rico in December this year.
After the announcement, however, a photograph of Souphavady’s government-issued identification card was leaked to social media, with her birth year listed as 1991, making her 30 years old, despite her claiming to be only 26 years old.
The global pageant maintains a strict age limit, as contestants must be between 17 to 26 years old before the entry date of the Miss World contest (which is usually 2 months prior to the coronation).
It is expected that the runner-up will now take the crown.