The Annual Prince and Princess Botswana children’s beauty pageants is back.
The event was postponed last year due to the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic. The pageantry’s grand finale will be held on August 7 at Westwood International School in Phase 4. This year the pageantry will be hosted as Little Miss International Botswana.
The competition’s director, Kefentse Gokganwang, explained that Prince and Princess Botswana is a product of QueenKay Arts Academy, children’s and teens festival that aim to promote talent and culture in youngsters aged between four and 19 years. She added that it offers them a platform to compete at an international level.
“The International pageant was established in 2000 in Thailand, where contestants from across the globe competed at an international stage, but currently the international pageant is still on halt due to COVID-19 restrictions. Prince and Princess Botswana officially got a franchise in 2019 where we were able to represent our country well and put it on the map by scooping four tittles being Little Miss Model International 2019, Little Miss Africa 2019 (continental award), Little Miss Elegant Model and Mini Miss Africa. The country was represented by three young girls namely Felepina Leburu, Yangu Masalila and Dignity Vimba,” she said.
She pointed out that the pageantry was held in Botswana in 2019, explaining that this year will be their second time hosting the event. Gokganwang further explained that the pageant initially was to be held on May 2, 2020, but due to the COVID-19 regulations, the competition was put on hold. She stated that lockdowns and restrictions did not favor hosting the event.
“We had 40 finalists and the number was reduced to 25, because other parents were affected by COVID-19 and could not continue with the expenses for their children to take part whereas some were withdrawn due to school issues, since they are sitting for final year exams. We do not have many activities lined up, because of the 2 hours maximum time set for events. Contestants will showcase on creative national costumes, then do their talent performances and the final parade will be the evening wear,” she said.
Furthermore, she said that it would not be an easy thing to work under COVID-19 restrictions, because they had to increase ticket prices, which became an inconvenience and a burden to parents too. However, she said they intended to find better ways of reducing the burden of hosting a virtual event, which would allow them to have more numbers of attendees since some would not have to attend the event in person.
She also emphasised that if the COVID-19 situation continues, they would not be able to expose their winners to an international stage of which currently they don’t have a solution for since international travels are also restricted. “I have been hosting children’s beauty pageants since 2016 and I have been an International director for four years. I am proud to say in all the three international pageants we went for we won them.
Tittles we won for the previous International Kids Pageants includes; Pre-Teen Princess Africa 2018 : Full name for the pageant is Little Prince and Princess Africa hosted at Nairobi in Kenya and Best Cultural Wear award - Little Prince and Princess Africa 2018 still in Kenya, Princess of The Earth 2018 - full name for the pageant is Little Model Earth International 2018 held at Cape Town, South Africa,” she said.