Beauty pageant for born-again young women

Patience Bambalele

Patience Bambalele

To celebrate the ultimate expression of true beauty, intelligence and integrity, a new pageant for Christian women has been established.

Known as the Queen Esther International 2009 Beauty Pageant, this will introduce the industry to something completely new.

Founded by Botswana national Vehae Tjiriange, the pageant is looking for Christian women between the ages of 18 and 25, who are born-again, not married and do not have any children.

Tjiriange won Miss Malaika Botswana 2005 and went on to become the First Princess of Miss Global 2007 in Jamaica.

She says the pageant is inspired by the Esther story in the Bible.

"Basically, I read the Esther story in the Bible and I was inspired. The pageant will be different because we are looking for people who have good morals. We are looking for true models," she says.

"We are searching for the most inwardly and outwardly beautiful and talented young women who display a Christian character. Young people need women role models who display a fear of God and have grown into skilled, educated, articulate and productive members of society."

Tjiriange says as the pageant is for Christians, it will be unique in the sense that contestants would not wear swimsuits or clothes that are too revealing.

She says their aim is also to draw attention to the realities of Aids, poverty, the plight of abused women, orphans, widows, street children and foreigners.

Tjiriange says the provincial events of the pageant will be staged in five major cities locally, culminating in the national gala event towards the end of the year.

"Each province will be represented by two provincial winners which means in total we would have 18 finalists in the gala national finals."

The pageant selection process begins in the middle of this month.

The national gala event takes place on December 5.