SA’s hope rides on a wave of love

Miss South Africa heads to Miss Universe competition

Miss South Africa Zozibini Tunzi carries her wave of love with her to Miss Universe while taking a stand on gender equality in the country.

Tunzi, who will be jetting off to the Miss Universe competition, revealed her national costume for the pageant, taking place in Atlanta, Georgia, on December 9.

Her unusual-looking costume, called the Wave of Love and designed by Lloyd Kandlin, is adorned with love letters on ribbons written for the women of South Africa.

“In what will be a first, I will literally take South Africa with me to Miss Universe. I will wear a wave of love from men in the form of love letters celebrating and honouring the women of this country,” she explained.

The letters were written by men who endorse her campaign, #HeForShe, which she launched earlier this month.

She was crowned three months ago at Times Square in Pretoria and has made her mark in the hearts of many South Africans who love what she stands for and her natural beauty.

The 26-year-old beauty queen held an intimate farewell ceremony with close friends, family, other beauty queens at the Maslow Hotel in Sandton on Friday.

She said: “I am so proud that there have been three variations of different women because that is the message we are trying to put out. Women are multifaceted.

You cannot just look at one woman and think that she is a prototype of what a woman should be.”

Miss South Africa has aligned herself with the UN solidarity campaign #HeForShe for the advancement of gender equality.

“I am so proud to be able to step in my advocacy of breaking beauty stereotypes and stepping in the advocacy of gender equality with the UN,” Tunzi said.

“I don’t know if you guys know this, but we have 180 years to go before we can bridge the gap of gender equality.”

By Nokuthula Zwane

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