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One Giant Leap From Tsolo Zozibini Tunzi From A Rural Eastern Cape Village Wins Miss Universe Title #MissSouthAfrica #MissUniverse2019

MISS UNIVERSE 2019 ZOZIBINI TUNZI JoziStyle Edward Chamberlain-Bell

There was jubilation, tears, shouts of joy and excitement as Miss South Africa 2019, Zozibini Tunzi, was crowned Miss Universe at the Tyler Perry Studios is
Atlanta last night. It’s a huge leap for the humble girl from Tsolo who grew up amid great poverty in a rural part of the Eastern Cape.

Resplendent in a Gold and Blue Biji Gibbs designed gown, inspired by the African soil and the coastline of the Eastern Cape at sunrise, the 26-year-old wept as Catriona Gray, Miss Philippines Universe 2018 placed the crown on her head.

An exuberant Stephanie Weil, CEO of Miss South Africa organisation, said: “We are delighted and not in the least surprised. She shone in every way during the pre-process in the run up to Miss Universe.

“Zozi has such a unique look, she was a front runner from the start. We are so very proud of her. She is beautiful both outside and in.”
In a tearful interview after the pageant, Zozi said she was overwhelmed by the support she had received from “everybody back home. My social media accounts have blown up during the entire period. I want everyone to know I am very grateful.

“I’m bringing back the crown for you all, for South Africa,” she said, adding that she was happiest that her #heforshe campaign – to get perpetrators of gender-based violence to be accountable – will have a global platform.

“We need to get the word out to men out there: Be better. Do better.”

Zozi becomes the third Miss South Africa to wear the Miss Universe sash and the crown, named “Power of Unity”.

Margaret Gardiner earned the title in 1978 and Demi-Leigh Nel-Peters wore the Miss Universe crown in 2017.

The Miss Universe 2019 crowning moment video

FACT FILE
Fifteen things you should know about Miss South Africa, Zozibini Tunzi

1. She was born in Tsolo, eSdwadweni in the Eastern Cape on September 18, 1992 into a family of educators – her mother Philiswa Tunzi Nadopu is a school principal in an Eastern Cape village called Bolotwa; her father Lungisa Tunzi works at the Department of Higher Education and Training in Pretoria.
2. She is the second of four girls (Yanga, 30, Sibabalwe, 24, and Ayakha, 13) and jokes that she entered the Miss South Africa competition to prove she was the most beautiful Tunzi sister.
3. She describes her family as her “true north”, the constant in her life who remain her “centre of joy”.
4. She was crowned Miss South Africa 2019 on Friday, August 9, which just happened to be Women’s Day in South Africa.
5. At the time of winning the title, Zozi was completing her B-Tech in PR at Cape Peninsula University of Technology while working fulltime in an undergraduate programme at Ogilvy Cape Town. She had previously graduated with an ND Public Relations Management at the same institution.
6. She entered the Miss South Africa competition twice and was a semi-finalist in 2017, and winner in 2019.
7. She has chosen to celebrate her blackness by embracing her naturalness.
8. Zozi Quote: “I came into this competition with my natural hair as a symbol of my firm belief in fair representation of any shape and form. And so, through my win, I hope I have inspired people, even if just one person to be themselves at all times and to never compromise their identities, and to insert themselves in spaces where they feel that people like them do not belong.”
9. She is determined to dispel the myth that beauty queens have no depth. “Beauty pageants in 2019 are more than just outer beauty, they are about what an individual can offer to the world. They are about being impactful, being an empowered woman who can empower other women as well. That can never be irrelevant.”
10. Zozi is using her platform to change the narrative around gender-based violence. She believes it’s time to lay the responsibility at the door of perpetrators and will use her year of reign working towards making them aware that they have to change their behaviour.
11. She is inspired by the likes of Steve Biko, Nelson Mandela, Princess Diana and those of their calibre.
12. Zozibini is a hardcore Marvel fan and enjoys the DC comic Wonder Woman. 13. She describes herself as a pretty good singer although she doesn’t sing publicly. She’s terrified of heights (acrophobia) and holes (trypophibia).
14. Her favourite food is Umngqusho (pronounced “oom-nqoo-shoh” which is made from stamp mielies and sugar beans) and a beef stew.
15. She is the reigning 2019 Miss Universe.

Miss South Africa Zozibini Tunzi Biography
Zozibini Tunzi (25) – from Tsolo, eSdwadweni in the Eastern Cape is the new Miss Universe 2109.

She was crowned Miss South Africa 2019 on Friday, August 9, which just happened to be Women’s Day in South Africa. At the time of winning the Miss SA title, Tunzi was completing her B-Tech in PR at Cape Peninsula University of Technology while working fulltime in an undergraduate programme at Ogilvy Cape Town. She had previously graduated with an ND Public Relations Management at the same institution. She says her family is the most important part of her life: “I once read that a child chooses their parents. If that is true, my family is the best decision I have made in my life so far. Everything else could be falling apart but they remain the constant centre of my joy.”

Her mother Philiswa Tunzi Nadopu is a school principal at Bangweni JSS, a school in a village called Bolotwa in the Eastern Cape. Her father Lungisa Tunzi works in Pretoria at the Department of Higher Education and Training. She has three sisters: Yanga (30), Sibabalwe (24) and Ayakha (13). “My dad is the greatest father in the whole world; he probably knows the names of all previous titleholders of this pageant, probably even more than I do because he shows interest and invests time in everything his daughters love.” Zozibini is a hardcore Marvel fans and enjoys the DC comic Wonder Woman; she’s a pretty good singer although she doesn’t sing publicly and she enjoys nothing more than Umngqusho (pronounced “oom-nqoo-shoh” which is made from stamp mielies and sugar beans) and a beef stew. She had previously entered the Miss South Africa competition in 2017 and was a semifinalist.

Says Tunzi: The first misconception people have about beauty queens is that they have no depth, which is why they don’t find the relevance in beauty pageants. This is far from the truth. Through pageants I have entered in the past I have met so many inspirational women from different industries doing amazing things for their lives and their societies. Looking at the past contestants of the Miss SA competition we have seen the most brilliant minds grace the stage. Beauty pageants in 2019 are more than just outer beauty, they are about what an individual can offer to the world. They are about being impactful, being an empowered woman who can empower other women as well. That can never be irrelevant.” She has been praised and celebrated for her natural beauty.

“I came into this competition with my natural hair as a symbol of my firm belief in fair representation of any shape and form. And so, through my win, I hope I have inspired people, even if just one person to be themselves at all times and to never compromise their identities, and to insert themselves in spaces where they feel that people like them do not belong.” She is inspired by the likes of Steve Biko, Nelson Mandela, Princess Diana and those of their calibre.

“During my reign I will carry the message that is important to me; to hold men accountable for their behaviour towards women. I will say to them: Do Better. Be Better.” She is the reigning Miss Universe 2019.

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