The Top 12 Miss South Africa 2015 finalists, who are vying for the title of Miss South Africa 2015, have been announced.
They will compete for the prestigious title at the Sun City Superbowl on March 29, an event which will be televised live and simulcast on M-Net and Mzansi Magic.
The finalists come from around the country: Seven are from Gauteng, three from the Western Cape and one each from Kwa-Zulu Natal and Mpumalanga.
They are Busi Mahlangu, Chanelle Sardinha, Danelle de Wet, Gugulethu Banda, Kim Wentzel, Liesl Laurie, Nicole Lee Lamberts, Ntsiki Mkhize, Refilwe Mthimunye, Shanè Naidoo, Sihle Makhanya and Taryn Morris.
Ziphozakhe Zokufa, the current Miss South Africa who took the title after her predecessor Rolene Strauss was crowned Miss World, will crown her successor at the 2015 pageant. Zokufa is currently in the US competing in the Miss Universe pageant.
For Western Cape finalist Nicole Lamberts it was a dream come true and on the day she celebrated her birthday: “The judging was extremely tough but I gave it my all and left it to fate.”
Many contestants have entered the pageant before – for one it is her fourth attempt to wear the crown.
It was third time lucky for finalist Danelle de Wet who first entered in 2011 when current Miss World Rolene Strauss was a contestant: “Rolene and I were the babies in the competition (which was won by Melinda Bam) – in hindsight I was far too young. I entered again in 2012 but feel that the time is right for me this year. Some people may think I’m mad but this has always been my dream and I was determined to make the finals this year.”
Busi Mahlangu, a 23-year-old economics student from Mpumalanga, carries the hopes of her province as their only representative: “I have grown in confidence since the start of the competition and am determined to do well,” she said.
“We believe we have a very strong Top 12, a group of young women who are passionate about competing and who have the intelligence, dedication and attitude to be a winner,’ says Claudia Henkel, PR Manager: Sun International, licence holders of Miss South Africa. “The judges had a difficult task choosing the Top 12 from the 24 semi-finalists, but I am confident that the winner will prove to be a powerful ambassador for the Miss South Africa brand.”
Suzette van der Merwe, Executive: Commercial Communications for headline sponsor Cell C said “It was extremely hard choosing 10 finalists, to the extent that the panel of judges unanimously agreed to change the 10 to a Top 12 as there were so many strong contestants.”
All finalists were presented with an 18 carat gold necklace with an onyx flower pendant courtesy of Jack Friedman Jewellers who made the Miss South Africa Palesa platinum crown.
The Miss South Africa Pageant is a proud collaboration between Sun International and Cell C. The new Miss South Africa 2015 will be crowned at Sun City on March 29 and simulcast live on Mzansi Magic Channel 161 and M-Net Channel 101.