Miss Universe Canada Nova Stevens has finally broken her silence regarding the controversy that has torn a rift between Dubai-based Filipino fashion designer Michael Cinco and MGMode, the team behind the Canadian beauty queen.
“Unfortunately, I have been made to be involved, so I just want to clarify a few things,” Stevens said to begin her video which she posted on Sunday. This really hurt me because I have nothing but love for both parties.”
They have both helped me in ways that I can’t even count, so every day I count my blessings because of these two people, or I guess three because MGMode is two people and Michael Cinco,” she continued.
She then addressed Cinco by reiterating her “love” and “gratitude” towards the latter’s designs which made strutting on the Miss Universe stage more memorable.
“You have created the most beautiful gowns I could think of. I’ve never once imagined that I would work with you because you’re Michel Cinco. So the fact that I was able to work with you is honestly a highlight of my career as Miss Universe Canada. So I just want you to know that that gratitude would never be diminished no matter what. And I’ll express that gratitude publicly and privately,” Stevens affirmed.
“Please know that that will never change. I will continue to always be grateful towards you because you have been nothing but kind to me.”
Stevens also implored her fans not to relate the recent controversy to her experiences with Cinco and MGMode during the pageant, which she deems the “highlights” of her career.
“Just to have these two highlights of my careers be attached to such negativity is what I don’t like, I don’t like that at all. Because I want to look back and think, ‘Wow, I’ve worked with the Michael Cinco, and wow, I met with my family (in MGMode),” she declared. “So please, all I’m asking is that you attach these great events in my life with positivity because they’ve been nothing but positive for me.”
I just want you guys to stop fighting. I want this to be taken privately, I don’t think they are both deserving of this, it’s not fair for all of their hard work,” she said.
Following her plea for privacy, Stevens then set her Instagram profile to private but her video was soon reuploaded online.
“Ungrateful, vile, professional users”
What prompted Stevens to take her sentiments public is Cinco’s recent tirade on Saturday towards MGMode, who accused the renowned designer of committing “inexplicable” mistakes during the Miss Universe pageant.
Cinco took to Facebook on Saturday to write a lengthy post refuting MGMode’s claims and airing his side of the story.
“I don’t normally respond to unnecessary social media rants or any negative criticisms about my work but this one caught my ire as it seems to put uncalled for blame on my team week after Miss Universe. The audacity of [saying] ‘truth to be told’ when it is bereft of it,” he said.
Cinco’s first point fired back at Miss Canada’s team’s allegations regarding the gowns’ tardy arrival.
“Firstly, the gowns arrived on time. Or [else] how could you have sent me photos and videos of her wearing them, showing how the gowns perfectly fitted her, days before each event. You even posted a video of NOVA in her last fitting and she was happy,” he asserted. He also highlighted that MGMode asked him to cinch Stevens’ 26-inch waistline down to just 23 inches.
“I obviously didn’t heed even if you said that in pageants, comfort doesn’t matter. But PLEASE don’t say that her gown was ill-fitting,” he continued.
Then, he furiously fired back at claims that he was trying to “sabotage” Stevens’ title pursuit by pointing out that he had shelled out all sorts of support.
“I even went out of my way hiring a team of world-class photographer and film maker to shoot her in my couture gowns at a world-class location in Dubai just to give her extra publicity mileage and create for her a balance of glam and luxury as opposed to her humble homecoming in Africa,” he said. “And everything in that shoot was paid for by me.”
Finally, the fashion designer shared how appreciative the other Miss Universe candidates were for the opportunity to wear his couture gowns. He even stated that the eventual winner, Miss Mexico, took the time to thank him for them despite not being able to wear the gowns at either the preliminary or the coronation event.
“But for Nova and your team, not only have I not [gotten] a curt ‘thank you’ but [she] even seemed so upset with me for being eliminated in the pageant,” Cinco bared. “Am I the judge?”
Venting his version of the story, Cinco revealed that it was the Miss Canada team that had been exploiting him for several years, not the other way around.
“Lastly, here is the real truth to be told: you and your team have been using me and taking advantage of my kindness for the past 3 consecutive years to dress up your candidates without paying me any cents! You don’t even pay the courier or any other charges,” he said. “A simple thank you note from Nova, [or] you and your team would have sufficed. But you don’t have the grace and decency to do that.
“You all are ungrateful, vile, and professional users. Next time don’t ask me or any FILIPINO designers to dress up your candidates. Ask your Canadian designers to showcase their works in world stage.”
Cinco then closed out his rant with a powerful declaration: “I don’t need you in my career and dressing up your candidates will not help my business. Stop taking advantage of my kindness and stop scamming Filipino designers.”