HARARE – Unimpressed Miss Zimbabwe pageant organisers have been forced to shelve a scheduled boot camp after discovering that only seven out of 16 girls selected through provincial competitions meet expected standards.
Sibusisiwe Mazibuko, the Miss Zimbabwe Trust secretary, admitted to the Daily News that the quality of the girls selected was far from impressive.
“The camp has not started yet as we do not have enough girls because most of them do not meet world requirements,” she said.
“Of the 16 girls the provincial competitions produced, only seven met our requirements. We had to let the others go. When they came for familiarisation, we realised that they did not meet the vision that we have for Miss Zimbabwe.”
Despite the national finals fast approaching, Mazibuko revealed that the door was still open for suitable girls to try their luck.
“We are still accepting those who want to come for castings as the number has not reached what we have in mind (30),” she said.
Girls who wish to participate in the Miss Zimbabwe finals should have a minimum height of 1,72 metres, a hip size of 99 centimetres and below and weight not exceeding 60 kgs.
The Miss Zimbabwe Trust secretary said they could be forced to relax required standards.
“We shortlisted those measuring 1,68 to 1,69m and we might engage them if push comes to shove. The camp will start as soon as we get 30 suitable girls.
“When all the girls selected by provincial licence holders came in for familiarisation recently, we also included the shortlisted ones in our programme. We taught them on how to conduct themselves in public, during special occasions and anywhere else for that matter.
“We did not sideline them as we know that they are aspiring models who unfortunately cannot meet our requirements,” added Mazibuko.
Mary Mubaiwa, the Miss Zimbabwe Trust chairperson who recently took over the running of the national pageant from Kiki Divaris, has embarked on a concerted drive to rebrand the country’s flagship beauty contest.
The former model has moved the pageant from the city to Bushman’s Rock, 40 km outside the capital city.
For the first time this year, the Miss Zimbabwe national finals will not be open to the public but to selected invitees.
Miss Zimbabwe organisers have also roped in South Africa-based designer Spiro Villoti to create gowns for the girls who will participate in the August 16 finals.