When Shudufhadzo Musida was crowned Miss SA about a year ago, her major concern and challenge were how much of her role as a beauty queen would be affected by the Covid_19 pandemic. She had no one to take notes from but looking back at her tenure, the former Miss SA believes she served her purpose well indeed.
“I was in disbelief, but as the months went by I knew why I had to be Miss SA during this time. I knew I had to speak about mental health. I became more confident in what I was doing and why, and what my purpose was. So now, as I hand over the crown, I know that I’ve fulfilled my purpose and there’s no better feeling than that.”
Musida, 25, is from Ha-Masia village in Limpopo. She moved to Joburg for part of her high school education and matriculated from Bryanston High School.
At this year’s edition last week, she passed her crown to her successor, Lalela Mswane, during the finale of the 2021 Miss SA pageant which was filled with glitz and glam.
She wore a specially designed Gert-Johan Coetzee gown for the occasion. She says the dress is a true representation of her reign and who she is, and is also “the beginning of something great”.
Musida says that rather than dampen her year, Covid-19 had created more pressure for her as a leader because she “advocates for the agency”.
“Adapting to the situations around us to make the world a better place. So the work should never stop just because we feel like the world has stopped. We all have a responsibility to practise our agency and adapt in the best way we can — as we did with Covid-19.”
“It was important to destigmatise mental health from the ground up, which is what the book aimed to do. So we targeted children because it’s time for us to give them a seat at the table [on] important social issues such as mental health.”
She places much value on education because it was important to her grandparents, who weren’t able to get an education.
She wishes the new beauty queen, Lalela Mswane a great tenure ahead and said she trusts she’ll have a blissful reign.
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