Africa – Ladies and gentlemen, your new Miss Universe is Miss South Africa, Zozibini Tunzi!
Sunday 8 December saw the crowning of the 68th Miss Universe at the Tyler Perry Studios in Atlanta, Georgia, USA.
Zozibini Tunzi won the 2019 Miss Universe pageant on Sunday night, beating out nearly 90 other women from various countries and territories in the annual competition.
Tunzi, 26, is a public relations professional and activist whose platform is largely based on her fight against gender-based violence, according to her contestant biography.
The three-hour show was hosted once again by award-winning comedian, Steve Harvey alongside actress and former beauty queen Vanessa Lachey, and saw performances by Fifth Harmony member, Ally Brooke.
Zozibini is the third South African to win the Miss Universe crown. The first was Margaret Gardinerin 1978, followed by Demi-Leigh Nel-Peters in 2017.
She is also the first Miss Universe to wear the brand-new “Power of Unity” crown which is said to be worth R73 million.
While Tunzi certainly stole the spotlight throughout the night, it was during her final question portion that she really made everyone stop straight in their tracks. When asked “What is the most important thing we should be teaching young girls today,” she had the perfect response.
“I think the most important thing we should be teaching young girls today is leadership. It’s something that has been lacking in young girls and women for a very long time,” she said. “Not because we don’t want to, but because what society has labelled women to be. I think we are the most powerful beings in the world.”:
She continued, “And that we should be given every opportunity. And that is what we should be teaching these young girls, to take up space. Nothing as more important than taking up space in society and cementing ourselves.”
For her final statement, she not only made everyone feel inspired but empowered.
“I grew up in a world where a woman who looks like me with my kind of skin and my kind of hair was never considered to be beautiful,” Miss South Africa explained. “And I think that’s time that stops today. I want children to look at me and see my face and I want them to see their faces reflected in mine.”