Beauty queen stripped of crown

MASERU — The reigning Miss Lesotho Companies, Rethabile ‘Mefane, has been stripped of her crown for participating in the Miss All Basotho Convention (ABC) party beauty pageant two weeks ago in breach of terms of her contract.

‘Mefane, 19, was crowned Miss Lesotho Companies in May last year after beating 14 other local beauties.

Under the terms of her contract, ‘Mefane was barred from participating in any other beauty contest while she still held the Miss Lesotho Companies crown.

Speaking to the Weekender this week, Miss Lesotho Companies organiser, Limakatso Makutle, said they took the decision to strip ‘Mefane of her crown after she competed in the Miss ABC contest.

Makutle said ‘Mefane had been unruly when confronted about her participation in the Miss ABC competition.

Her behaviour was unbecoming for a beauty queen, she said.

“This started early this year when she refused to attend a social responsibility campaign in Mafeteng.

“She was still to appear before the committee to hear her reasons but while we were preparing to deal with that, her name was among participants of the Miss ABC,” Makutle said.

Makutle said when she contacted ‘Mefane to ask her about her participation in the contest, she responded rudely saying she was “moving on”.

“She bluntly told me she was moving on and if I wanted to take the crown I could go ahead and do so,” she said.

She added that ‘Mefane’s first runner-up could now be crowned Miss Lesotho Companies. But in a separate interview ‘Mefane told the Weekender she was relieved that she was now free of Miss Lesotho Companies title.

“Yep, I am no longer Miss Lesotho Companies and I don’t feel any shame because I have the opportunity to expand my horizons knowing I am not under the control of certain people,” ‘Mefane said.

She added that the Miss Lesotho Companies title had been a headache for her.

She added she had not yet received her prizes which include a make-up hamper and evening gowns that she was promised.

“Secondly, we were told that we are allowed to compete at competitions that are of the same standards or bigger than Miss Lesotho Companies, so I really don’t know what the issue is all about.

“But above all I am happy that I am now free,” Mefane said, adding she felt like a caged animal because the Miss Lesotho Companies prohibited her from participating at fashion shows or any events that would give her some exposure.

She accused the organisers of taking the credit whenever she initiated social responsibility campaigns.

“The organisers of the Miss Lesotho Companies took my shine by ensuring that the media wrote about them yet I was also supposed to be acknowledged,” ‘Mefane said.

The organisers had also failed to provide her with opportunities that could help develop her modelling career.

“When ausi (sister) Maki came to me ordering me to not participate in the Miss ABC contest, I told her to go and consult my parents who had allowed me to participate in both pageants,” ‘Mefane said.

“I told her I wouldn’t leave the pageant and informed her that she could take the crown if she wanted to.”

‘Mefane said she could not allow anyone to hold her hostage and would do everything in her power to advance her career.

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