A radiant Demi-Leigh Nel-Peters has been crowned Miss South Africa 2017 at a glittering ceremony held at Sun City, presented by Sun International in collaboration with Cell C.
Runners-up are Adè van Heerden from the Western Cape (1st Princess) and Boipelo Mabe from Alexandra in Gauteng (2nd Princess).
An excited and overwhelmed 21-year-old Demi-Leigh from Sedgefield in the Western Cape – said she was determined to make a difference during her reign.
In her Miss South Africa acceptance speech she said: “I vow to dedicate the next 365 days of my life to serve the people of South Africa, to be a voice to those who are afraid to or cannot speak up and to represent the whole of our beautiful nation. I vow to listen, to be there, to help where I can and to recognise that we all want to be heard, we all want to be validated. I hear you, I see you, I am you!”
Before she was crowned Miss South Africa, Nel-Peters had completed her B.Com in business management and entrepreneurship and was a part-time model.
As Miss South Africa 2017, Demi-Leigh received R1-million in cash from sponsors Sun International and Cell C, as well as a bouquet of prizes that has elevated the competition to one of the richest pageants in the world.
For the first time in the history of the Miss South Africa pageant, members of the public were invited for the finalist they thought should take the crown.
The event – broadcast live on M-Net and Mzansi Magic – was a star-studded affair.
Sun International’s Public Relations Executive, Claudia Henkel said: “Miss South Africa represents the whole of South Africa and will make a meaningful contribution to the lives of many. We at Sun International are delighted with the crowning of Demi-Leigh whom, I am sure, will walk the path with pride and passion.”
Suzette van der Merwe, Managing Executive for Cell C said, “This pageant provides life changing experiences for all the participants and for the winner an opportunity to inspire and make a real difference. Year after year we see talented, dynamic young woman grow into their roles of South African ambassadors and community caretakers. I have no doubt that Demi-Leigh will shine in her reign over the next year.”
This year’s Miss South Africa judges were Maps Maponyane, Unathi Msengana, Cameron van der Burgh, Bridget Masinga, Gisele Wertheim Aymes and former Miss South Africa Claudia Henkel. Public voting contributed to 25 percent of the vote.