Miss South Africa

Photo by Gallo Images/ER Lombard.

Miss Universe drama: SA Govt withdraws support for Miss South Africa

Politics and pageants do not mix. Our own government has now withdrawn its support for Miss South Africa. Here’s why…

Miss South Africa

Photo by Gallo Images/ER Lombard.

The growing political drama around Miss Universe and the involvement of Miss South Africa, just keeps on growing. Things have now escalated so far that the South African government has announced that it is withdrawing its support for the Miss South Africa pageant.

Miss Universe vs Miss South Africa: What’s going on

This year’s Miss Universe is taking place in Israel in December. After plenty of back and forth and “fake news” claiming that Miss South Africa Lalela Mswane would be pulling out of the pageant, both Miss SA and the organisers said they would attend as normal.

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Public pressure has grown for Miss SA to not attend the pageant in Israel, due to the state’s treatment of Palestinians. The South African government is one of several countries that has described Israel as an apartheid state.

Last week, Miss SA released a statement saying that Mswane would “not be bullied as an adult”. And made to abandon her dream of representing her country globally.

The Department of Sport and Arts and Culture has now hit back.

“The South African government withdraws its support and that of South Africa for the Miss South Africa pageant. This is following the latter’s intransigence and disregard of advice against partaking in the Miss Universe pageant scheduled to be held in Israel during the month of December 2021.

The atrocities committed by Israel against Palestinians are well documented. Government, as the legitimate representative of the people of South Africa, cannot in good conscience associate itself with such.”

The Department of Sport and Arts and Culture

What now for SA and Miss Universe?

The department says after having several discussions with the Miss SA organisers, things turned nasty and they were met with an “unpleasant demeanour”.

Government says that it referred the Miss SA organisers to Archbishop Desmond Tutus stance on Israel after visiting the Palestinian people. Arts and Culture Minister Nathi Mthethwa government and the organsiers could not come to an agreement.

Despite this, there is still hope that “common sense” will prevail. Mthethwa the department say they are still open to further discussions.