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News - Date: 14 April 2019
Written by: Mbulaheni Ridovhona / Viewed: 6349
A student of the University of Venda, Tondani Rolivhuwa Sikhwari, was crowned Miss South Africa Plus World during a ceremony held at Bloemfontein on Saturday.
She will represent South Africa next year in the Miss Plus World International Pageant in Texas, USA.
Tiisetso Mashabathakga from Gauteng was the first princess and the second princess was Petronella Mabaso from Mpumalanga. The pageant is designed to give curvy women a platform to showcase their natural beauty and to break the stereotype that curvy women are not beautiful.
The 22-year-old Tondani from Makwarela said she was delighted to be crowned queen. "It is such an honour to win this event. I have conquered what they deemed impossible for a young black girl," she added. "Your body does not define who you are, it shouldn't set limitations to your passion, ambitions and aspirations in life. Your inner beauty unleashes your outer beauty."
She thanked her family, church and friends for making it possible for her to win. "Thank you so much for your moral, spiritual, and financial support. I never would have made it without you. Having such a positive support system keeps me going to achieve better. Thank you so much. I was really humbled to see everyone go all out to support me," she said.
She said that she is passionate about being a plus-size model. "Society has set limitations for people like us and often leaves us out in various activities, mostly in the beauty industries. I want to break that chain," she added.
She started modelling during Grade 8 at Tshivhase Secondary School in 2009. “I love dancing. They had various activities for pupils to engage in. I chose ballroom dancing and kwaito and I was the only plus-size (person) in both groups. That encouraged me to do more and engage myself on all plus-size platforms that could open in the future."
She was crowned Miss Venda Plus Size first princess 2017/18 and Miss Univen African Size queen in 2018.
She is a final-year LLB student.
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Miss South Africa Plus World winners: Tiisetso Mashabathakga, Tondani Sikhwari and Petronela Mabaso. Photo supplied .
The 22-year-old Mbulaheni (Gary) Ridovhona has been passionate about journalism to the extent that he would buy himself a copy of weekly Univen students' newsletter, Our Voice. After reading, he would write stories about his rural village, Mamvuka, and submit them to the very newsletter for publication. His deep-rooted love for words and writing saw him register for a Bachelor of Arts in Media Studies at the University of Venda, and joined the Limpopo Mirror team in February 2016 as a journalism intern.