The country’s new Miss South Africa, Lalela Mswane, says she will use her newfound fame to ease youth unemployment.
The 24-year-old dancer from Richards Bay was crowned during the pageant’s finale at GrandWest Casino’s Grand Arena, on Saturday.
“I was so shocked because I was already so fulfilled and blessed to have made top three. So, for me, taking the title is genuinely just the cherry on top,” she said of her win.
Unemployment was a complex issue, but action to reduce it was needed more than ever, she said.
“I intend to live by every word I have expressed and to serve, lead and represent our beautiful nation to the best of my abilities.”
The newly-crowned Miss South Africa received R1 million in cash as well as a further R3 million worth of sponsorships and prizes, including the use of a fully furnished flat at the Central Square Sandton and a Mercedes Benz C-Class Sedan for the year of her reign.
Unlike last year, due to Covid-19 restrictions, a live audience could enjoy an evening filled with lights, cameras, glitz and glamour in support of their favourite Miss SA finalist.
But tickets were limited and those attending the pageant had to present a valid, negative Covid-19 PCR test or be fully vaccinated.
The audience was treated to performances by singer and record producer Zakes Bantwini, gospel singer Ntokozo Mbambo, the Ndlovu Youth Choir, and Miss World Toni-Ann Singh of Jamaica.
The Miss South Africa Top 3 will represent the country at the Miss Universe, Miss World, and Miss Supranational pageants.