Steve Harvey took extra caution when reading the teleprompter at this year’s Miss Universe pageant, and it helped him from making a bizarre error as host of the event. Steve was about to announce the winner of the pageant, and it came down to Miss India, Harnaaz Sandhu, and Miss Paraguay, Nadia Ferreira. As he read the teleprompter, he said, “Congratulations, Portugal…” However, he took a moment to pause and realize that Portugal wasn’t even one of the remaining contenders. After processing the situation, he fixed the mistake before it went any further.
A bizarre kerfuffle from @IAmSteveHarvey “Congratulations Portugal”, followed by confused looks from Miss Paraguay, Miss India, and Miss South Africa. We still love you, Steve! #SteveHarvey #Portugal #MissUniverse #Paraguay #MissIndia #MissSA #misssouthafrica pic.twitter.com/iMOiLMdpmU
— Jennifer Su (Jen Su) (@jennifer_su) December 13, 2021
“They wrote Portugal on the damn sign trying to play me,” Steve said. “They’re trying to get me again, but I’m not going for it this year! Congratulations PARAGUAY — they have Portugal on the damn sign. Y’all saw it. Don’t try to blame this on me this year.” In the end, it was Harnaaz who was named Miss Universe, and Steve correctly crowned the right person.
This latest mistake comes six years after Steve actually DID announce the wrong winner at the 2015 Miss Universe pageant. Steve said that Colombia’s Ariadna Gutierrez had won the pageant that year, and she even had the crown placed on her head. However, it was taken away when he stepped forward to reveal that Ariadna was actually the first runner up, with the Philippines’ Pia Wurtzbach actually winning the competition.
Steve faced major backlash for the error, which he later called an “honest mistake.” He explained that he noticed the “1st” next to Colombia on his note card, but didn’t take into account that it actually said “1st runner-up.” He apologized to both ladies after the broadcast. “I’d like to wholeheartedly apologize to Miss Colombia and Miss Phlippines for my huge mistake,” he admitted. “I feel terrible. “Secondly, I’d like to apologize to the viewers that I disappointed as well. Again, it was an honest mistake. i don’t want to take away from this amazing night and pageant. As well as the wonderful contestants. They are all amazing.”
Despite the controversy, Steve returned to host the pageant in 2016. He continued in the role from 2017-2019, as well. In 2020, the pageant did not air on Fox like usual due to the coronavirus pandemic, and Mario Lopez and Olivia Culpo hosted. However, Steve returned for another stint in 2021.Click to Subscribe to Get Our Free HollywoodLife Daily Newsletter to get the hottest celeb news.