'I'm not looking for perfection or moral purity': Zozi Tunzi on judging Miss SA 2020

The inspirational beauty queen reveals what she'll be looking for in a Miss SA winner and shares a heartfelt message to the next woman who'll wear the crown

15 October 2020 - 10:47 By Toni Jaye Singer
Miss Universe Zozibini Tunzi has been named as one of the judges for the 2020 Miss SA pageant.
Miss Universe Zozibini Tunzi has been named as one of the judges for the 2020 Miss SA pageant.
Image: Supplied/Miss SA

Just a year ago, Zozibini Tunzi's life changed forever when she was crowned Miss South Africa and, shortly afterwards, Miss Universe. Now it's her turn to help change another woman's life — and she's “nervous”, “humbled” and “excited” to do it.

Tunzi will join the panel of judges responsible for crowning Miss SA 2020 at the pageant's glamorous finale later this month.

Sitting alongside her at the judge's table will be radio host Anele Mdoda, former Miss SA and CEO of Standard Bank Wealth Nonhlanhla Peggy-Sue Khumalo, and actress Leandie du Randt. A fifth judge is still to be announced.

I know what it is like first-hand to be in the job that these incredible women are applying for,” says Tunzi.

As such, she clear on the qualities she's looking for in our country's next beauty queen: “I am mostly looking for someone with raw authenticity and sincerity about who they are. I am not looking for perfection or moral purity.

"[I am looking for] someone who has a voice and an aura about her that makes almost everyone feel at ease when they come in contact with her because she will be engaging with a lot of people in the year.”

Tunzi's advice to the 10 finalists vying for the title is not to be “too much in their heads” during the finale.

She explains that they've done an “incredible job” during the preliminary stages of the pageant and so “the final night is for them to be proud, to celebrate their achievement and to have fun”.

Sasha-Lee Olivier took over the Miss SA 2019 title when Zozibini Tunzi was crowned Miss Universe.
Sasha-Lee Olivier took over the Miss SA 2019 title when Zozibini Tunzi was crowned Miss Universe.
Image: Miss SA

Tunzi also has a message for this year's winner, who will inherit the crown from our reigning Miss SA Sasha Lee Olivier.

Addressing the future Miss SA 2020, she says: “You are going to create the most beautiful memories and touch a lot of lives. Never take that lightly or for granted - it is a blessing.

“There are some times when things will get really hard, and when that happens, I want you to remember why you started. It will get you through the craziest days.

“But most of all, live in the moment and enjoy it fully because time passes by so quickly. Good luck, you are going to be incredible.

The 2020 Miss SA finale will take place at The Table Bay Hotel in Cape Town at 5pm on October 24. It'll be aired on M-Net and Mzansi Magic as well as being streamed online.