Johannesburg – Eastern Cape born and bred Zozibini Tunzi was crowned the 61st Miss South Africa 2019 on Friday evening.
The event took place at the Times Square Arena, Menlyn Maine, in Pretoria, where thousands of members of the public and celebrities gathered to witness the event.
The Miss SA crown’s name of Buhle was unveiled this past week and was inspired by uBuhle Bethungo Lenkosazane, which means “the beauty of a rainbow”. The name was chosen as a celebration of women, cultural diversity and the Rainbow Nation which was a direct correlation of some of the contestants in the top 16.
Tunzi took over the crown from last year’s winner Tamaryn Green.
Before the big announcement, the 25-year-old was asked how she would use her title as Miss South Africa to improve the country, saying: "I am a firm believer in education, and I would advise that they push education. We might not be able to do much for elders, but we can do so much for children by starting them early."
Tunzi currently resides in Cape Town an graduated with a ND Public Relations Management from the Cape Peninsula University of Technology. She is now completing her B.Tech in PR while working at Ogilvy Cape Town in an undergraduate programme.
The pageant was hosted by local media personality Bonang with supporting presenters, Liesl Laurie (Miss South Africa 2015) and Zavion Kotze of the The Wedding Bashers) presenting fame.
The panel of judges was an all female squad, with influential figures which included Radio and TV presenter Anele Mdoda, Ferguson, albino model, activist and lawyer Thando Hopa, who was the first woman with albinism to feature on a Vogue cover, Miss Universe Catriona Gray from the Philippines, and former Miss South Africa and Miss Universe Demi-Leigh Nel-Peters
The show was attended by celebrities such as socialite Khanyi Mbau, TV personality and anchor Claire Mawisa, model Bokang Tshabalala, fashion designer Gert Coetzee and many more.
Tunzi takes home close to R3 million in prize money and sponsorships, which includes R1 million in cash as well as a luxury car, an apartment in Sandton, shopping and beauty vouchers. All the 16 finalists received R25,000.
"I want to live a more purposeful life and so with this title, I am hoping to touch lives and I am hoping wherever I am I will do great."
African News Agency (ANA)