ANN Province promotes environmental sustainability with beauty pageant

Lagos, Nigeria

When push comes to shove, all humans will eventually have to learn to co-exist peacefully with their environment. Following this stance, the Africa Nigeria-Niger Province has decided to find a way to reach the youths, then the masses, about the need to all be participants of the Green Alliance project. What other way to garner massive youth participation than through entertainment and shows that appeal to their senses. This is where the Don Bosco Online Radio of the ANN Province comes in.

Since its inception five years ago, the Radio has successfully organized two beautiful editions of the Africa Face of Peace Pageant (AFOP), with the respective winners coming from the Ibadan and Akure communities of the ANN Province. This third edition took a bigger and more dynamic format. It started with incorporating the theme of Environmental Sustainability into the Pageant, and choosing to select two winners, as opposed to one. They chose a King, a Queen, and three members of their court.

The Pageant process started with the source for sponsors, by the youths manning the radio, and the Social Communication Delegate, Br. Samuel Job, SDB, who is also the director of the radio and Pageant and this was followed by the call to registration graphics release. Quite a number of applicants showed interest in the Pageant, the theme, and of course, the prizes. The audition was conducted online, given the diversity in the various locations of the intending contestants. At the end of the process, only 13 applicants impressed the judges enough, to be officially unveiled as the contestants of the 2022 AFOP Pageant. After selection, they were given the following identities: Miss Tiv, Miss Nubian, Mr. Zulu, Miss Ashanti, Miss Oromo, Mr. Igbo, Miss Malagasy, Mr. Hutu, Miss Somali, Miss Bini, Miss Kanuri, Mr. Ibibio, and Miss Ebira. After the third stage, where they had to depict any African traditional occupation of their choice, Mr. Igbo and Miss Oromo were dropped, leaving 11 contestants to battle for the chance to be King and Queen.

They resumed camp on the 4th of October at the Don Bosco Animation Centre, Akure, and left after the Grand Finale on the 9th of October. In camp, they had to perform a pet project defense of the topic “Environmental Sustainability; How to battle plastic pollution as a pageant King or Queen.” They also had to present, alongside their defense, any home appliance made from plastic or glass bottles. The contestants dazzled the judges and one could see creative things fashioned out of bottles. There were flower vases, a waste bin, pencil and brush holder, pencil cases, toys, a table, and even an actual flower fashioned out of plastic bottles.

They also participated in an ultimate search, skills acquisition program, karaoke night, movie night, drama presentation, environmental talk with an expert, catwalk and dance lessons, and on Thursday, 6th October, went to the ancient town of Idanre, Southwestern Nigeria, to climb the 660 steps up the ancient hills and experience the once thriving civilization up there. Finally, on the 6th day, the Grand Finale began at 5 pm and it could be described as a colourful experience.

It started with a unity dance performance by the contestants, dressed in clothes provided by a brand sponsor, after which each contestant came forward for the introduction. Their next outing was the creative wear outing, and each contestant portrayed an African Deity of their own choosing. The following outing was the ethnic wear appearance, and one could see the contestants dressed in the traditional outfits of the various ethnicities they were representing. The final touch to the night was their dinner-wear outing. Looking beautiful and resplendent, the contestants wore dinner wears made from Ankara and other traditional African attires.

They had to answer questions from various designations and at the end of the night, the following people became the new members of the AFOP Royalty court:

  • King Franklin Ezeigbo: Mr. AFOP 2022 (Winner)

  • Queen Zita Akinrimisi: Miss AFOP 2022 (Winner)

  • Queen Rosemary Oziegbe: AFOP Top Model 2022 (1st Runner-Up)

  • Queen Clara Ikpakronyi: AFOP Tourism 2022 (2nd Runner-Up)

  • Queen Faustina Egwu: AFOP Heritage 2022 (3rd Runner-Up)

A big congratulations to the new Faces of ANN Province, ANN youth, and the new DBOR Ambassadors.