THE journey that began with 400 girls came to an end at the weekend when Zambia's Lukando Nalungwe walked away with the 2010 M-Net Face of Africa title.
The 22-year-old follows in the footsteps of former queen, Ghana's Kate Menson. She was crowned amid glamour and glitter at Eko Hotel Exhibition Centre in Lagos, Nigeria, on Saturday night.
Nalungwe, who hails from Kweba village, is studying business administration.
She beat five finalists, among them South Africa's Thembi Kobedi, Rossana Hall from Zimbabwe, Ernania Rainha Manuel from Mozambique and Marvis Chinelo Offor from Nigeria.
The show, the eighth edition of the competition, was broadcast live in 47 African countries.
South Africa's David Tlale and John Kaveke of Kenya showcased their designs while Nigeria's ND-banj and Lira entertained the glamorous crowd.
The judges were looking for the one woman who "best captured the essence, personality, style and appeal of an African lady". While some entrants perfectly mirrored the look, Lukando had all elements to come out tops.
She walked away with $50 000 (about R387m) and will have an opportunity to walk for top designers on the New York Fashion Week this weekend.
She will also have a year supply of Iman beauty products.
Oluchi Onweagba-Orlandi won the inaugural competition in 1998.
It launched Onweagba-Orlandi internationally and made her one of the most sought-after faces in the business.
Today she is a top model in New York.
Nalungwe said she was fully prepared for the challenge ahead.