Miss SA trio tough cookies
THEY may have been considered the awkward ducklings of their youth but they have now – blossomed into Miss SA hopefuls. Finalists Boipelo Mabe, Adè van Heerden and Zozibini Tunzi are no ordinary girls. They believe that as a result of their background they have what it takes to be crowned SA s fairest. ’ Mabe comes from one of Joburg s townships, Alexandra, ’ and is the daughter of a taxi driver something she was once embarrassed – about. She says she felt the need to hide her father from her school mates. I attended Sandringham High School “in the suburbs. Most children at the school were from wealthy families, so when my father fetched me from the school with his ugly taxi I used to be so ‘ ’ embarrassed. He had the looks of a typical taxi driver and I was known as the daughter of a taxi driver. That used to break my heart because I wanted to be known as more than that, she says. ” Mabe says the school was so expensive her parents could not even afford the fees. When the bill came, my parents had “nothing.” But she is grateful for her dad s sacrifices. ’ I have always been an ambitious girl. But “when you come from Alex, people think your life belongs in the township and you can t go above the life of that township. ’ I grew up knowing that my parents did “not have much. I wanted to be something and I had to work myself out of the poverty,” she says. The 23-year-old is now a freelance news reader at Soweto TV and an international relations masters student at Wits University. Zozibini Tunzi is from a village in the Tsolo area in the Eastern Cape. The coy beauty says she was encouraged by her mom to start participating in pageants at the age of seven but never
– won any.
She says she has always dreamed of being Miss SA and her mom has always been supportive of her dreams.
The public relations dropout from Cape Peninsula University of Technology is passionate about education but she had to put her own on hold under tough financial circumstances . Education is very “close to my heart, my family, so it was so heart-breaking for me to drop out of school. It s been a tough
’ journey for me. I was very frustrated and hurt when the university said I couldn t
’ continue due to my historic debt. Though I was financially excluded from my studies, I m
’ still very passionate about getting educated in future. The students are fighting for all those who face a bleak future. I hope something positive comes from this struggle, says Tunzi. ” The 23-year-old says she wants to be the voice of young women in SA. I don t believe in giving up and there are “’ so many women who give up only after one storm. We need to push until we open doors that we want to enter,” she says. Van Heerden is a Cape Town medical doctor and lieutenant in the SA National Defence Force. Originally from Herolds Bay, also in the Western Cape, she says it s time for SA to have a strong ’ woman as Miss SA who can bring huge changes to this continent. I want women to know that “they are extremely powerful. They can do anything and we need to step up and lead,” says Van Heerden. The 25-year-old completed her medical degree at Stellenbosch University. The physically fit and toned beauty says she wants to change perceptions that women who take on maledominated careers are not feminine. I believe a lot in “planning. I m a big ’ planner and firm believer of using the small time we have in the day to be the best we can be and do the best things we want in life. Miss SA resonates a lot “with who I am and growing up to be. Because being a lieutenant in the military as well as a medical doctor has moulded me into a strong woman, I know that can make a huge difference in the country ” says Van Heerden. Miss SA takes place in March next year at Sun City.
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