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Miss Nigeria unveils 2018 edition

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Ezinne Akudo Anyaoha

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The search for the 42nd Miss Nigeria is about to begin, as organisers have announced entries for the pageant. And in a bid to avoid financial restraints on young ladies, who are truly deserving of the ultimate title, the organisers have also withdrawn registration fees for the competition, which is opened to ladies within 18-25-age bracket. Meanwhile, contestants must possess leadership qualities that must align excellently with the organisation’s mission to empower women beyond beauty.

According to the creative director, Miss Nigeria Ezinne Akudo Anyaoha, six core targets will be crucial in the selection of the ultimate winner this year; education, environment, arts and culture, health, financial management and technology.

“We are committed to finding a young lady who defies the stereotypical perception of beauty queens as just superficial. Miss Nigeria must embody all the attributes of strong female leader; she must be beautiful, socially conscious and committed to positively influencing young women across the country and continent.”

Meanwhile, the competition this year will not be business as usual, as the winner will not be selected based on physical attributes alone, but factors such as intellectual prowess, ability to function effectively within the six core targets. The pageant seeks a queen, who loves and promoted the Nigerian arts and culture, one who recognises technology as the future and invests her time in improving the technological state of the nation.

Speaking to The Guardian, the reigning queen Miss Mildred Peace Ehiguese, while applauding the platform outlined some of the projects she has worked on.“The first project I worked on was an awareness programme in partnership with National Agency for the Prohibition of Trafficking In Persons (NAPTIP) to create awareness on human trafficking. I had a malaria awareness programme with Youth Empowerment and Development Initiative (YEDI), and we also had a skills girls project which is empowering girls with skills they require to survive in the society including personal hygiene and crafts.”

Ehiguese said she had a ‘Dark Lagos’ outreach, inspired by the Otedola Bridge incident.“I visited the Burns and Trauma session of the Gbagada General Hospital with items to help them recover as no one plans for such unforeseen disaster. I have also had an Ajegunle Back to School Outreach where we gave out school items to assist the less privileged get back to school.”

The psychology graduate, who is passionate about reaching out and owns an NGO, Mild Heart Foundation focused on children living with sickle cell anemia and mental illness, said she is poised to achieve more with the little time she has.“Before Miss Nigeria, I have always had the heart to reach out, and so the platform helped me do more, I don’t want to have any project slip by because projects take time to mature and so I decided I will work with as much organisations as I could and make as much impact as I could.”


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