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Nigeria Masterweb News Report

    Nigerian Wins Miss World Crown

    (Saturday, November 17, 2001)

    By Chief Charles O. Okereke, Nigeria Masterweb

    *You can always Stop the Music if it is a source of distraction.

    Miss Agbani Darego Miss Agbani Darego, an 18-year-old Nigerian computer science student is the winner of the 51st Miss World pageant held Friday in Sun City, South Africa. She was chosen from 93 contestants from all over the world. She had promoted herself as wanting to be a computer scientist as well as a super model. Runners up were Zerelda Lee(Miss Aruba) and Juilet Horne(Miss Scotland). The event was hosted by U.S. TV talk show personality Jerry Springer, and was beamed to a projected global television audience of 1.2 billion people. The beauty gala was held in Sun City, at South Africa's Kingdom of Pleasure, a luxury resort of casinos and wild animals. Darego won a total cash prize of $100 000, plus gifts valued at $150 000. She was quoted with this statement "black is beautiful'', moments before being crowned.

    Directed to email addresses and local telephone numbers, TV viewers for the first time took part in the voting. Emails were for questions to contestants, the phone for registering votes. Pageant organizers refused to disclose the weight of the votes of viewers.

    Miss Agbani Darego hails from Rivers State in Nigeria. Today the governor of Rivers State, His Excellency, Peter Odili , congratulated her, on her great achievement. Governor Odili called her achievement "an expression of the natural endowment of the people of Rivers State and noble qualities of Nigerian womanhood." He went further that the historic feat was "symbolic of the spirit of the new Nigerian nation and renaissance of our cultural values."

    The Miss World contest was founded by British entrepreneur, Eric Morley in 1951. Morley died last year weeks before the 50th anniversary celebration of the event. There have only been three winners from Africa since the inception of the event and two of them were white South Africans(1958 and 1974). The third, was from Arab Egypt(1954). Miss Agbani Darego is the first black African woman to win the title.

      Listen to: Nigeria is beautiful, 'Angel Jingle'

      Listen to: 'African Anthem'

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