Dilay Willemstein, 21, was tipped to win Miss World 2021 in Puerto Rico but she says she has withdrawn because organisers eventually told her she must get the vaccine to be able to compete
Image: EVERT ELZINGA/EPA-EFE/REX/Shutterstock)
A Miss World hopeful has withdrawn from the competition to avoid getting the Covid vaccine.
Netherlands representative Dilay Willemstein says she won’t go to Puerto Rico for the final because she “isn’t ready” to have the jab.
The 21-year-old explained that she has pulled out of the December pageant on Instagram – and told her fans why.
Miss World Netherlands CEO Katja Maes say that organisers did not ask about the vaccination status of competitors earlier because it was part of their private medical information.
Dancer Willemstein told her 22,000 followers: “I would like to inform you that I will no longer represent the Netherlands in Puerto Rico, on the big Miss World stage.
“This is partly due to the vaccination obligation, personally I am not ready for this yet.
“This means that the runner up (the one who got placed second in the National final) will represent the Netherlands in Puerto Rico.
“So I thought about it carefully and considered taking the jab, but at a certain point I thought I’m just not ready for this at all. I don’t feel good about it.”
The model, from Eindhoven, Holland, explained that the event organisers eventually told her that she had to get an appointment to be vaccinated.
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But she says she does not have any regrets, adding: “This was my choice and I stand by it.”
She went on: “I did not make the decision overnight. I still had a few months to think about it so I kept putting it off.”
Runner up Lizzy Dobbe – who is doubled jabbed – will replace Willemstein in the showpiece event at the end of the year.
“It is of course very sad for Dilay, but I am very honoured that I can travel to Puerto Rico,” she told AD of the “super cool and unexpected” development.
Organiser Maes said Miss World “did not know in advance whether or not vaccinating would be a problem”.