“Before making the decision to become a judge for the pageant, I thought long and hard about the kind of message that pageants send,” says magazine editor Baffoe.
“The truth is, Miss South Africa has evolved. It isn’t only about beauty, but is more about finding a smart, and authentic person who will be a proud ambassador for our country.”
But for radio personality and fellow judge Anele Mdoda, beauty is just as important as the other criteria – if not more so.
“Beautiful woman are constantly having to apologise for hitting the gene lottery, yet we do not ask for these apologies from fast people or smart people. I say if you are pretty, use it all you want to get ahead, I don’t see anyone crucifying me for using my sharp wit to get ahead.”
For Mdoda, beauty – together with personality, kindness and longevity – are the characteristics of a perfect ambassador.
“I am not looking for someone to wear a crown for one year, I want someone who will carry the title into 2024.”