“I’m Living My Dream Right Now”- Shudufhadzo Musida
“I’m Living My Dream Right Now”- Shudufhadzo Musida
It is almost 2 days, since the radiant Shudufhadzo Musida was crowned Miss South Africa 2020, at the glittering pageant finale held at the Table Bay hotel in Cape Town, and she is still the talk of the town.
we have the pleasure of engaging with her in a press briefing hosted at the Table Bay hotel in Cape Town, yesterday morning.
As she enters the room full of the media, she beams and greets everyone. We ask her if she had enough sleep and she says she only slept for 4 hours.
“To first make sure that this is not a dream I had to to wake up just to pinch myself to make sure that this is happening and I realized that it is real. I slept like a baby and for the first time in my life I did not dream maybe it is because I’m living my dream right now,” she explains.
The spectacular pageant took place on Saturday evening, and this year it was a virtual affair due to the Covid-19 pandemic hosted by larger-than-life TV star Nomzamo Mbatha.
Mzansi and people from all over the world were on the edge of their collective seats as they streamed the virtual affair live to find out who would scoop the crown and Shudu said the finale was surreal because she kept on thinking about everyone from her village who was watching it.
“It feels surreal because during the whole time, all I could think about was ‘Oh my God, everyone in my village is watching! Everyone at home is watching.”
Shudu’s first runner-up is Thato Mosehle (25) from Klerksdorp in the North West and her second runner-up is Natasha Joubert (23), from Pretoria, Gauteng.
All three will represent the country at the world’s three most prestigious pageants. Previously, the Miss South Africa Organisation has sent a representative to both Miss Universe and Miss World, but will also now be fielding a candidate to Miss Supranational. It will only be revealed at a later date which contestant will go to which pageant.
The beauty queen says she will continue to create awareness on important social issues such as mental health and she says the message she has for South Africans is to be kind in order to rebuild our society.
“During a time like this with Covid-19, Black Lives Matter and Gender Based Violence when there is a lack of compassion we tend to lose a sense of the reality around us and I think every single person deserves a bit of kindness, helping one person can cause a ripple effect, you might be helping one but you might be helping out the entire nation because you do not know what that person will go out to do, so that is the message I could South Africa, to remember the collective responsinbilty to be kind a commitment to rebuilding our society and always practicing compasssion.”
“For me personally mental health is something that is not really spoken about, it is cosidered a taboo that is often engaged with not to rehabilitate but to shame, so I’m actually bringing that conersation forward its time our society needs help and to stand together to confront this and tackle it,” she explains.
She says the reason she is advocating for mental health is that she has had her own struggles with it.
“I have had my own struggles with mental health and I come from a rural area and disadvantaged area where when you struggle with mental health you don’t speak about it. It is almost a silent, shameful thing, you have to deal with.”
The reigning Miss SA says she will also be campaigning for food security in the country especially in rural areas.
“I will continue the fight against food insecurity in rural communities because children can only be their best at school when their basic needs are met. I believe that all of this will continue the efforts of bringing about economic empowerment in this country as more children will be given a fair chance at becoming active members of the economy through educational empowerment.”
Shudufhadzo hails all the way from Ha-Masia in Venda, Limpopo. She graduated with a Bachelor of Social Sciences in Philosophy, Politics, and Economics (PPE) from the University of Pretoria. The beauty reveals that she didn’t feel pressure following in the footsteps of reigning Miss Universe Zozibini Tunzi.
“When I first saw her, I saw my own face reflected. Before that I didn’t realise that people who looked like me could compete and win on international stages. She opened the door for me and allowed me to take up my own space. I’m not worried about comparisons – they aren’t a bad thing at all. I’m awed to be following in her footsteps.”
Shudu became a firm favorite with her authentic look. Her striking beauty, natural bald head, and well-informed answers had South Africa convinced that she is the next Miss SA 2020, explaining how she decided to cut her hair she says,
“I cut my hair in 2015. I was walking back from gym and I saw a salon and went there to cut. The reason why I decided to cut my hair It was for freedom and I attach too much importance to my hair because if I validate myself through my hair then we have a problem, so it was more from my personal feeling and also it is cheaper, ” she explains.
The 24-year-old walked away with a lucrative R3 million prize package and she will receive R1 million in cash as well as a further R2 million worth of sponsorships and prizes, including the use of a luxury Sandton apartment and a Mercedes-Benz cabriolet for a year.
The beauty thanked everyone who rallied behind her up until she reached the finishing line. She says she would like to serve as a beacon of hope to every single child.
“I want to be the representative of the beauty, diversity, and resilience that exists in this country. I want every child from every village who looks at the TV and sees this moment to know it is possible for them. I didn’t think it was possible for me and now I am sitting here with a crown on my head. Your dreams are valid.”