Stanley Uzoaru, Owerri
Fifty-five beauty queens from across the continent of Africa, at the weekend, stormed Owerri, the Imo State capital, on a courtesy call on Governor Rochas Okorocha, prior to their beauty pageant scheduled to hold in the state on November, 29.
Aim of their visit according to Mr. Taylor Nasar, president of the organising group who led the beauty queens on the courtesy visit, said that it was to intimate the governor on selection of another queen scheduled to hold in the state on November 29.
President of the organising group , Taylor Nasar who led the girls to the state ,earlier in his speech lauded the governor for uniting African children through his Rochas Foundation College.
According to Nasar, “It is on record that you Rochas Okorocha is the only governor in Nigeria that has brought African Children to Imo State to go to School from the Secondary to University level, boarding, feeding, clothing, without asking for anything in return. Nobody has done it in Africa”.
“This event started in 2010. The contest is a non-picnic contest and aimed at discouraging indecent dressing in Africa. You don’t have to expose your body or sell your body to become a celebrity. This is the message we are giving to them. We have beauty queens from 55 African Countries to participate on this Contest”.
Governor Okorocha earlier responding to Nasar called on beauty pageants across Africa to be united against illiteracy and poverty, Stating that for about 55 beauty queens from 55 African nations to come together, could be taken as the dramatisation of African Unity.
The governor Stated, “It has always been my desire to see Africans under one roof to dramatize Africa Unity so that Africans wherever they may be found would remain a united people. Today, that dream has come through, having all parts of Africa to come to Imo State. We are very proud of you. I want you to understand that though languages may seem to divide us, hills and oceans may separate us but what kept us as Africans is more important than the rivers and oceans that separate us”.
He continued “I am equally much happy that you are here to promote culture, decency and also to represent the very ideal of the African woman by having a non-picnic contest. This is what caught my interest and for the fact that you love education and have come to promote education and to speak for those vulnerable children and those who could not go to School due to poverty. This again is what has caught my fantasy”.
The governor remarked “Imo is a peaceful state with great hospitality. As a governor of the State, I urge you to feel at home within the two weeks of your stay. Africa is Africa, we are getting old and you are the next generation of Africans. We may have made mistakes as your leaders, elders and parents but you must never make the same mistakes made in our time”.
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He noted, “We urge all of you to remember the less-privileged in Africa and become ambassadors for the fight against poverty in Africa. Your contest is different from the normal contest. Yours is a contest of brain, beauty, patriotism and nationalism. You must be proud of Africa as Africa has the most beautiful women in the world and so we should be proud of our heritage and attires”.
He added “Whoever wins the contest will be made a citizen of Imo State. In the contest there must be a winner and loser when you lose, in African Spirit, hug the person that wins. This is the Spirit of Africanism. As you leave Imo State, you will become ambassadors of Rochas Foundation College of Africa. You must speak against illiteracy and encourage African children to be in School no matter their backgrounds”.