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Design student replaces dethroned Miss World Kenya beauty

Evelyn Njambi, 23, has been named Miss World Kenya 2016.

Little pomp marked the moment the reigning Miss Kiambu became Miss Kenya, a coveted position thousands of young Kenyan women aspire to.

Ms Njambi has spent the past the eight months playing second fiddle to the queen after emerging the first runners-up in a winner-takes- it-all beauty pageant whose finals were held in Kilifi County in December last year.

A statement from Ashleys Kenya, who are Miss World Kenya’s franchise holders, announcing her crowning said the 23 year-old interior design student at Maseno University was thrilled to be Miss Kenya.

‘EXCITED’

“I am excited to be Miss World Kenya 2016,” said Njambi.

Her crowning is overshadowed by a storm of events that culminated in the ouster last week of Roshanara Ebrahim following what the Miss Kenya secretariat termed as ‘gross misconduct’.

“A grave situation has come to our attention that is in breach of our Code of Conduct and our contract with the reigning Miss World Kenya 2016 Roshanara. We uphold a strict code of conduct that expects Beauty Queens to manage their public and private life,” read the statement.

Ms Ebrahim, a law student at the University of Nairobi, has not taken her dethronement lying down and has said she would be suing the secretariat, adding she will issue a public statement Monday on the advice of her lawyer.

Ms Mungai confirms being in receipt of the said lawsuit and said her lawyers would respond.

The pageant has a stringent criteria in its search for Miss Kenya, sending scouts to the counties to identify young women who fit international beauty standards.

BOOT CAMP

The girls are then subjected to intense grooming in a boot camp whereby a panel of judges chooses the best among them. The winner represents Kenya at the Miss World finals.

With just a few months to the global event to be held in Washington, DC in December, the new queen has asked for Kenyans’ support and goodwill.

PHOTO | COURTESY
PHOTO | COURTESY

“The journey ahead is tough with such a short time, but I appeal to the public to support me in my endeavour to represent Kenya in the international competition and in my Beauty with a Purpose project.”

The beauty has been using her regional title to fight Female Genital Mutilation.

While congratulating her, Ashleys Chief Executive Officer Terry Mungai said she was confident Ms Njambi was up to the task.

“Evelyne is a diligent lady. Although she has her work cut out for her, I am confident she will rise to the occasion and represent the country well at the Miss World Finals in December,” said Terry.

STEP DOWN

Evalyne’s ascension to the throne marks only the second time in the Kenya pageant’s 53 year history that a queen has been forced to step down.

The premier contest, held as part of the independence celebrations culminated in the crowning of Miss Uhuru in 1963.

For legal and ethical reasons, we will not divulge the reason alluded to by both parties but it has been grounds for the dethronement of beauty queens.

“We are devastated,” Ms Mungai said in the light of the revelations. “We have spent many months preparing Miss Kenya for the finals and now we were hopeful of bringing the crown home this time. This development takes us back many months.”

Miss World pageant whose motto is ‘Beauty with a Purpose’ has a strict code of conduct it expects the respective countries’ title holders to uphold.

In 2014 the pageant completely phased out the swimsuit category which paraded beauties in swimsuits that had been held in private since 2001 saying that it did not add value as the pageant is not just about beauty, but what one does with their beauty.