Durban - The three women representing KwaZulu-Natal in the Miss World South Africa pageant aim to use the platform to stand against inequality.
Zoe Magdalene Naidu, 23, of Durban North, Luyanda Mbhamali, 26, of Pinetown, and Alyssa Joane Smith, 26, of Pietermaritzburg, are among the 12 finalists who will compete in the pageant at the Pretoria State Theatre on October 28.
Speaking to the “Independent on Saturday”, Mbhamali, a supply chain specialist for a major retailer, said unequal access to opportunities had eroded social cohesion and hampered economic growth in the country.
“If there was one thing that needs to be eradicated in South Africa, it would definitely be inequality. Issues of disparity are the foundation of most of our grievances and justice needs to be practised more efficiently. This platform will enable us to transform the lives of those who are challenged. I believe we are able to use it to advocate against imbalances in society,” she said.
Mbhamali started a social outreach campaign called A Little More to empower underprivileged youth.
Naidu, who is studying towards a Bachelor’s degree in chiropractic at the Durban University of Technology, said: “I am thrilled to have made it to the top 12. I believe in using this platform to empower others and be the voice for the voiceless. Winning the crown would not be a throne, but rather a door to serving and empowering the multitudes.”
Alyssa Joan Smith, 26, of Pietermaritzburg, is an attorney and an advocate of community social investment projects. She believes if she wins the Miss World South Africa pageant, she will be able to represent the wealth of who we are as a people to the world.
She is the founder of the Webber Wentzel Leadership Programme, focusing on youth empowerment through direct engagement and mentorship. She also serves on diversity inclusion and employment equity committees.
The Miss World South Africa pageant will broadcast live on SABC3 from 5.30pm to 8pm.
The Independent on Saturday