Miss SA top 12 finalists. Picture: Thobile Mazibuko.
Miss SA top 12 finalists. Picture: Thobile Mazibuko.
Former Miss SA beauts Suzette van der Merwe, Bokang Montjane-Tshabalala, Yolanda Kloppers, Medinda Bam and Odette Scrooby-Joubert. Picture: Thobile Mazibuko.
Former Miss SA beauts Suzette van der Merwe, Bokang Montjane-Tshabalala, Yolanda Kloppers, Medinda Bam and Odette Scrooby-Joubert. Picture: Thobile Mazibuko.

Miss SA is taking an exciting new route this year. Celebrating its 60th anniversary, the pageant organisers announced that on May 27, two women, instead of one, will be crowned Miss World SA and Miss Universe SA.

Speaking at the Miss SA Top 12 announcement at the The Maslow Time Square, in Menlyn, Suzette van der Merwe, Miss SA 1990 explains the new process.

“In 2018, we’re adopting international best practice in terms of our finalist judging in order to ensure that our contestants are given a bigger share of  global spotlight by strengthening our pageantry presence internationally," she said.

"We are delighted that this new format will give two finalists the opportunity to represent South Africa and enable them to prepare thoroughly in advance.”

Miss SA top 12 finalists. 

Traditionally, on the final pageant night, the top 12 finalists are reduced to five, then three; the second princess, first princess and then the winner.

This year, however, the two winners will be selected from the top five. One will be crowned Miss World SA and the other Miss Universe SA, and both will go on to represent South Africa globally in each respective competition.

However, there will only be one reigning Miss SA. The two winners will be asked one final question by the judges and their answers will determine who is crowned as the official Miss South Africa 2018. 

“We are thrilled with the calibre of the finalists in our 60th anniversary year. Any of these contestants would do us proud on the international stage. We are delighted that this year two women will be given the opportunity to shine, ”says Gareth Flusk from Sun International.

Chatting to some of the women at the event, former Miss SA Bokang Montjane -Tshabalala, reigning Miss SA Adè van Heerden and one of the top finalists Miss SA Gauteng, Bryoni Natalie Govender were all beaming with excitement.

Asked  how she feels seeing young women walking the path that she’s walked herself, Miss South Africa 2010 Bokang Montjane -Tshabalala says more than anything else, she’s thrilled about diversity among this year’s top 12. 

Miss SA 2010, Bokang Montjane -Tshabalala. 

“It is absolutely beautiful and the biggest thing for me is diversity. I mean for a black girl, the moment you get crowned you become an inspiration to some many young black women in this country. To see a stage that is full of Colour girls, Indians, Whites, Black, and for me being one of the judges from the beginning till now, it gives me so much pride. And I’m happy with the girls that we’ve selected.

"I always say every crown has a name written on it, it has been decided even long before you born, so we just yeah we just waiting for the finals and I wish every girl all the best”.

Asked to give advice to the aspiring Miss SA finalists, the current crown holder Adè van Heerden said: "I feel like the proud mother of these 12 ladies, (and) I’m so excited for them because it is a journey of personal growth. It is a process that cultivate 12 incredible women by the end of it. 

"My advice to them would be to enjoy every moment but stay very focused on the goal because now the public knows and there’s a lot of attention, they can easily get distracted and we’re all here for one purpose and that is the crown.”

Miss SA 2017, Adè van Heerden. 

The Miss SA 2018 pageant will take place at The Maslow, Menlyn, Pretoria on May 27. See Miss SA Top 12 finalists here

IOL