‘Flies follow a stench!’

Elizabeth who is also Pageants Zambia director said despite being a popular face after her crowning in 1992, her well grounded character discouraged those men who thought she was na’ve and could be taken advantage of.

“Fortunately I have not gone through the stereo type label because of my well grounded character. The way you react to people will either encourage them to advance or put them off, it is therefore important that those aspiring to join modeling know how to conduct themselves,” said Elizabeth.

Although it has been 14 years since she last stepped on the catwalk , Elizabeth still remembers the exciting feeling she felt at being announced winner of the Miss Zambia 1992.

“It took me a while to register because I did not think I would win. My name was called out, and I just stood there. From there I had to work ten times harder to get the purpose of the title across to the Zambians which was quiet a new concept,” she said.

Elizabeth says being Miss Zambia and representing the country at the Miss World Pageant in South Africa still remains the highest point in her life.

No longer a model but still an advocate of beauty with a purpose and responsible for having sent nine beauties to represent Zambia at the Miss World, Elizabeth says the biggest hindrance in performing duties as an organizer for the pageant is sourcing for adequate funds to hold the pageant and give prizes.

“It is not easy to find sponsors and sometimes when you think you have found them they disappoint you despite having made a pledge. It has not always been easy but we still managed, I guess I continue to do it because of the belief I have that there are lot of beautiful Zambian women who can promote the country internationally through different pageants,” said the former beauty who though still fashion conscious maintains a natural look of little or no make-up and short natural hair.

In addition, she said the unfortunate talk going around town that the Miss Zambia competition offered an unattractive package hence the low caliber of ladies taking part was unfounded.

She explained that the Miss Zambia main prize is to attend the Miss World Pageant at a cost of more than US$ 15, 000.

“Prizes have actually grown bigger and not smaller. An example

being my self, who did not get anything at all and only managed to

attend the Miss World Pageant because of well wishers and my family.

As the years went on the winners only received about 3 to 4 sponsored items, mainly being make up and clothing,” she said.

The first major prize was in 1997, when the winner received a cell-phone, cars were given in 1998 and 1999. Since then prizes

have included furniture, computers, electrical equipment, jewelry, memberships and cell phones.

“Some of these items are not even given at most international pageants. Miss Zambia is now entered into several other pageants as part of the prizes.”

“The entrance requirements have changed due to the fact that women have evolved. Beauty alone is no longer the case. Ladies who have well paying jobs, who have their own homes and cars now enter Miss Zambia, so one can not say the caliber has dropped,” said Elizabeth, whose majority of contestants at last year’s Miss Zambia failed miserably to answer questions from the judges.

Elizabeth also defended the past beauty queens who have been accused of abandoning their charity projects after their reign.

“All formers holders of the Miss Zambia title continue with their charity project after their reign, but one has to realise they are no longer a focus point. Everyone’s interest turns to the new Miss Zambia.

In 1992, when I was crowned Miss Zambia I adopted the Street kids garden drop in center. I continued to work with the organization for nine years until it was closed by Red Cross,” clarified Elizabeth who is currently working as a marketing manager.

At 35 years old Elizabeth is now looking forward to settling down with a God fearing partner and having children.

October 2006
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