Twenty-Seven out of the expected 36 countries have arrived Calabar for the second edition of the Cross River State Miss Africa Climate Change Beauty Pageant.
The beauty pageant, which is the initiative of Prof. Ben Ayade-led administration, is a platform aimed at creating awareness about the effect of climate change and its attendant impact.
In separate chats at the TINAPA Lake Resort, Miss Fatima Ibrahim Murtar, a Moslem contestant from Somalia who sounded very optimistic of winning the crown said: “I want to do something different contrary to my belief.”
She explained, “we are already experiencing the effect of climate change in Somalia with deadly drought all over and I want to use this platform if I eventually win to educate our people, especially those in the affected regions about the dangers and see how we could bring succour to them through empowerment with the support of international bodies.”
Miss Hellen Itivita from South Sudan, who was awed by the beautiful Calabar scenery, said: “It’s nice to be in Nigeria finally. I have been listening to their music, watched their movies but I have never been here but today, I thank God I made it here. It’s such a beautiful place to be.”
On her chances of winning the crown, Hellen said: “I will stay positive. We all know Sudan is a war torn country, and if I win this pageant, I will work with international organisations there to preach more on the effect of climate change and environment.”
Speaking in similar vein, representative of Botswana, Miss Gaseangwe Balopi, said: “It is an opportunity to visit Nigeria because I have always watched their movies right from when I was young and today I am physically here to see these beautiful people and its landscape.
“I am glad that African is gradually transiting to the green economy which is the future from the traditional monolithic economy and I want to be that change agent that will help propagate the message of climate change across Africa to make a difference.”
Miss Chikaodili Nna Udosen, who is representing Nigeria at the pageant, said if she wins, “I will woo all the stakeholders to join Cross River State in the campaign against climate change which is becoming a global challenge.”