TWENTY-FIVE-YEAR-OLD Emily Tatanga Kachote, a financial advisor with Old Mutual, was on Saturday evening crowned Miss World Zimbabwe after shrugging off stiff competition from a bevy of 14 contestants at a colourful ceremony held at Mermaids Pool in Shamva.
BY WINSTONE ANTONIO
The country’s premier beauty pageant, which was running under the theme Probity, was beamed live on the national broadcaster ZBC TV.
Although the event was streamed live on the Internet, it was disappointing that only 50 people could view it at a time.
Tickets for the pageant, which was a black tie event, cost $300 a head.
Guests had access to free Wi-Fi at the pageant courtesy of ZOL.
The Harare-based Kachote, who is not new to modelling having been crowned Miss Harare in 2011, will represent the country at the 65th edition of Miss World pageant slated for October at a yet to be confirmed venue and date.
For winning the crown, Kachote got a Kia Picanto vehicle, among other prizes.
Annie-Grace Mutambu (19) was crowned the first princess and Chengetai Marcia Kanonhuwa (18) second princess, while Anissah Ndiriwani (22) and Vanessa Mutemasango (20) were capped Miss Talent and Miss Personality (voted for by the public), respectively.
An excited and overwhelmed Kachote said she was determined to make a difference during her reign.
“It is by the grace of God that I have been crowned Miss Zimbabwe and I am optimistic that I will be able to represent my country better at Miss World pageant,” Kachote said.
Outgoing queen Tendai Hunda said she was ready to work with the reigning queen.
“I am proud that today, I finally had my last walk on the ramp as Miss Zimbabwe. I wish the incoming queen all the best and I will be available to help her bring the crown home at Miss World pageant,” Hunda said.
Some of the girls who made it into the top-eight are Melody Muza, Panashe Pfende, Rairo Gunguwo and Melody Chitsungo.
The first segment of the pageant saw the models taking to the ramp dressed in national colours, while in the second and final segments, they were dressed in Macramé and evening wear. Their outfits were designed by South Africa-based Zimbabwean designer Spero Villioti and a local designer.
The judge’s panel was made up of chief judge Kamal Khalfan, Ruth Mandiwanzira, ZOL Zimbabwe chief executive officer Denny Marandure and Krystyana Grabowska.
Kiki Divaris, Information, Media and Broadcasting Services minister Jonathan Moyo, Zimbabwe Tourism Authority chief executive officer Karikoga Kaseke, businessman Phillip Chiyangwa and Defence minister Sydney Sekeramayi were among the guests.
Information Communication Technology, Postal and Courier Services minister Supa Mandiwanzira was the guest of honour.
This year’s edition of the pageant was a star-studded affair with an improved gathering of 600 delegates, an increase from 460 who attended last year’s event.
Miss Zimbabwe Trust chairperson Marry Chiwenga was happy with the success of the event.
“We are going to commit ourselves and teach our queen to change and entrench good values of a good African woman who will represent us well during the Miss World,” Chiwenga said.
She applauded the role played by Divaris towards the growth of the modelling sector.
“Her passion and compassion should be to uplift and empower the African woman, to have a purpose, to be recognised, to have good morals and social standing in society,” she said.
Chiwenga promised a more glamorous event next year.
Leonard Zhakata, Mudiwa Hood Mutandwa and Trevor Dongo, among others, provided some entertainment.