Seychelles’ beauty queen Gabriella Gonthier won the Miss University Africa Tourism 2021 title at the Miss University Africa pageant in Abuja, Nigeria on December 18.
Gonthier, 23, who is a fashion model as well as a senior monitoring and evaluation officer of the Ministry of Fisheries and the Blue Economy, told SNA that “in all honesty, I still have not processed winning the title, I am going through a rollercoaster of emotions.”
“I am extremely joyful to state that it’s not me who won – it’s Seychelles that won. I wore my country’s pride on my heart and that reflected on stage and today we are enjoying the fruits of that labour – that is hard work, determination and positivity,” she said.
In 2018, Gonthier was crowned Miss Regatta at the Seychelles Regatta event at Beau Vallon. Two years later, she took part in the Miss Seychelles pageant and won a prize for Best Creative Costume. She is also a woman who has left her mark in the male-dominated field of football, as she has been recognised twice as a top scorer by the University of London in FIFA referee courses.
In 2020, Gonthier took part in the Miss Seychelles pageant and won a prize for Best Creative Costume. (Joe Laurence, Seychelles News Agency) Photo License: Photo License: CC-BY
The director of the Miss University Africa Seychelles, Terry Carolla, said that this time around, the Miss University Africa pageant was special in the sense that there were two crowns being awarded – the Miss University Africa 2021 and Miss University Africa Tourism.
He said that Gonthier was judged on her project, which focused on certain aspects of the Blue Economy, as well as her character and personality, an interview, her performance in a cultural dance and the production of a video, amongst other criteria. “She has made history by becoming the first candidate to win Miss University Africa Tourism in the pageant’s 12 years history,” said Carola.
Miss University Africa is a non-bikini pageant that brings together contestants from all over the African continent. It is committed to promoting and celebrating the beauty and innate potentials of students on the African continent.
An official crowning ceremony will be organised in Seychelles for Gonthier as she is currently on official duties overseas.
The ninth edition of Miss University Africa took place on 1. Following a 14-day boot camp, the grand finale took place on December 18, which saw the crowning of Adar Yusuf Ibrahim from Somalia as Miss University Africa 2021.
The Miss University Africa pageant, founded in 2010, provides the winner with a platform to discuss issues of vital social importance and find lasting solutions.