Miss Namibia 2021

I can’t believe we’re back here again ...

Source: Miss Namibia Facebook

It's been years of watching our national pageant meant to bring us joy and pride as a nation but up to now, it only brings us tears.

Like many Namibians, I tuned in to the national pageant last weekend to witness the crowning of this year’s Miss Namibia.

What transpired is something I’d honestly rather unsee. The poorly constructed dresses on most of the ladies, the seemingly rushed production, and even worse, no flower bouquets for any of the winners and no sashes for the first and second princesses.



How on earth was this even a national pageant? There is absolutely no way that a group of people planned and executed this disaster and are happy with the outcome.

Many of you know by now that I’m a sucker for pageants but I can say for a fact that I’ve been to high school pageants that were 10 times better than this one.

The entire thing was embarrassing as it was uncomfortable to watch - mediocrity central, if you would.

Listen, I was so stressed! The only saving grace was Chelsi winning which many of us can surely agree was the best thing about the event.

What I fail to understand is that for years, Namibians have complained about this pageant and how it’s run, often offering solutions on how it can be done better. At the time, when only South African talent was sought for the event, my own columns in The Namibian were relentless in pointing out this unfair practice. Eventually, after many Namibian creatives aired their frustrations as well, our prayers were finally heard and Namibian designers became a feature in the pageant.

Many other frustrations about how the pageant has been run perpetually fall on deaf ears. There are seemingly no fucks given there by the committee. It was such a great scandal that even a whole title holder alleged that she didn’t receive the financial support and training needed to prepare for international pageants. She was so done with the whole thing, she didn’t even officially hand over the crown to her predecessor, rather choosing to boycott the 2019 pageant altogether.

The saddest thing about all of this is that we are stuck in this situation until she-who-I-shall-not-name resigns. Until she can admit that there’s a problem, we’ll go through this mess every single year. Another way out would be a total boycott by every participant, just before the crowning event. I can already see it. This would be so catastrophic that the pageant will be transformed with immediate effect. Unfortunately, the latter is not likely to ever happen given how much our young women need platforms like this to break out. As chaotic and poorly run as it is, Miss Namibia still opens so many doors for participants and previous winners can all attest that for the most part, their lives were transformed for the better by the title.

So sadly all we can do is hope and pray that the former happens. That our beloved, whom I still will not name, calls it a day.

In the meantime, can I please beg all good samaritans out there to organize a young photoshoot for Chelsi? One that will replace the flowerless, ugly-gown-tainted crowing photos from the big night?



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Wearing many hats that include journalist, publicist, events organiser and freelance writer, Rukee is most passionate about storytelling and brand-building. 

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