The Miss Universe organization has decided to sever ties with its Indonesian franchise and has canceled a planned Miss Universe pageant in Malaysia following allegations of sexual harassment.
A complaint was filed against pageant organizers two days before the coronation, after six Miss Indonesia finalists were asked to strip for body scans to check for cellulite or scars.
“Based on what we have learned about Miss Universe Indonesia, it is clear that the franchise does not live up to the standards, ethics or expectations of our brand,” the US-based Miss Universe organization said in a statement on X, formerly known as Twitter .
The company said it had “decided to terminate its relationship with Indonesian franchise company PT Capella Swastika Karya and its country director Poppy Capella”.
He thanked the contestants for their bravery, adding that “providing a safe place for women” was the organisation’s top priority.
Police in Jakarta said an investigation had been launched following complaints from the finalists.
The Indonesian franchise also holds the license for Miss Universe Malaysia, but will not host the pageant this year, according to New York-based lead organizers.
In a statement posted on Instagram, Capela denied participating in any physical examinations, adding that he was against “violence or sexual harassment of any kind.”
The Jakarta pageant aims to select Indonesia’s representative for this year’s Miss Universe pageant, which will be held in El Salvador on November 18.