LOS ANGELES-Selena Gomez paid an emotional tribute to best pal Francia Raisia on stage at the Billboard Women in Music awards, after her donation of a kidney saved the pop singer’s life .

The 25-year-old, who required an organ transplant due to complications from the illness lupus, was being honoured by the magazine as its Woman of the Year.

Earlier this year, she shared an image on social media, taken whilst the pair lay side by side in hospital.

“I think Francia should be getting this award. She saved my life… I feel incredibly lucky,” said Selena through tears.

“Honestly, I couldn’t be more grateful for the position that I’ve been given in my career from 7 to 14 to now.

“I feel like for me, with my music, I’ve been able to illustrate the things that I want. ‘And I’m reminded by a team of people who believe in me even when I don’t myself, and I couldn’t be luckier.”

Other winners included Camila Cabello, who kicked off the ceremony with her chart-topper Havana. She was named breakthrough artist and presented with her award by “friend and fan” Diplo.

She said:”The only reason I’m standing on this stage and on this soil in this country is because of one woman, my mom... thank you to the woman of life .”