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Your First Look at Our African Beauty Queens Representing at the 2012 Miss Universe Competition – Who Will Bring the Crown Back to Africa?



On Wednesday 19th December 2012, the 2012 edition of the Miss Universe Competition at the Planet Hollywood Resort & Casino, Las Vegas, USA.

The show will be hosted by Bravo’s Executive Vice President of Development and Talent, Andy Cohen  (known for producing reality shows like the Real Housewives franchise and Being Bobby Brown) alongside E! News/Fashion Police  co-anchor, Guiliana Rancic.

At the Miss Universe finale, 88 beauty queens from around the world including our very own African queens from Angola, Ethiopia, Gabon, Ghana, Mauritius, Namibia, who will be returning after a 3-year long hiatus, Nigeria, South Africa and Tanzania, will vie to win the coveted crown and take over as Miss Universe from Angolan beauty, Leila Lopes. will bring you photos of the beauty queens as the arrive in the USA, till then, check out their profiles and get to know them.

Name: Marcelina Vahekeni
Age: 22
Hometown: Ondjiva
Born in 1990, Marcelina Vahekeni is an Angolan beauty pageant titleholder who was crowned Miss Angola 2011 and is representing her country in the 2012 Miss Universe pageant. She is a model and a student of Human Resource Management.

Name: Helen Getachew
Age: 22
Hometown: Addis Ababa
Helen Getachew grew up in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, where she had a very spiritual upbringing. She enjoys reading the Bible, spending time with family and friends, at the cafe and fashion malls. In addition, Helen hopes to one day be involved in working with organizations that help the poor, especially children.

In her Own Words
I would enjoy working for a nonprofit organization, but my dream in life is to create one myself.

Fun Facts about Helen

  • She enjoys decorating and making things beautiful
  • Helen thinks that the biggest problem facing the world today is food shortage
  • If Helen could meet any celebrity, it would be Liya Kebede because of her work with UNICEF


Name: Channa Divouvi
Age: 21
Hometown: Ngounié
Channa Divouvi was raised in the modest neighborhood of Libreville. Her hobbies include cooking, reading, and shopping. Raised by a mother who is blind, her dream job is to own her own association that helps the visually impaired in her country. She would also like to start a cosmetic company that caters to women of color.

In her Own Words
My mother’s positive attitude throughout all challenges gives me a different perspective in life.

Fun Facts about Channa

  • She collects seashells and she likes to use them to make decorations
  • Channa works as an airport hostess
  • Channa once helped a woman deliver a baby in her car


Name: Gifty Ofori
Age: 24
Hometown: Accra
Gifty Ofori grew up in the suburbs of Accra, the capital city of Ghana, in a household where discipline, hard work, and achievement were always emphasized. Quite the tomboy, She would often be found playing outside with her siblings and friends. Her interests include gardening, nature, and travelling. Currently, Gifty works as a registered nurse and hopes to one day become a doctor.

In her Own Words
I pursue every goal and opportunity presented to me with passion.

Fun Facts about Gifty

  • She collects pebbles gathered from along the coast of Ghana and other West African beaches
  • Gifty’s dream job is to become a medical journalist on an international news network
  • Gifty once helped deliver a baby on the side of a road when she was a first-year nursing student


Name: Ameeksha Devi Dilchand
Age: 26
Hometown: Curepipe
Ameeksha grew up in Curepipe, Mauritius, which is situated on the central plateau of the island. During her college years, she played soccer on her college team for 6 years. She has a law degree and would like to later go on to become a politician. She is about to start concentrating on her Bar Vocational Practice to become a barrister to serve her nation. Ameeksha’s dream is to eventually work as either a Minister of Education or Minister of Sports & Leisure for her home country of Mauritius.

In her Own Words
If we start right now by giving a hand to the needy person next to us, we will be heading towards a better future both economically and socially.

Fun Facts about Ameeksha

  • She would love to meet the Manchester United Footballer Luis Nani
  • Ameeksha was not a girly girl growing up, she played soccer throughout her childhood
  • One of Ameeksha’s most unusual jobs was predicting horoscopes via text messages


Name: Tsakana Nkandih
Age: 22
Hometown: Windhoek
Tsakana Nkandih hopes to one day become the first female President of Namibia, because, through this role, she would be able to battle her country’s internal socio-economic issues and strive to empower women. Her strongest passion is reading. She also enjoys volunteering with animals and gardening. Currently, she is attending The University of Namibia in order to gain a degree in Public Management.

In her Own Words
As a politician, I could be an asset to the cause of women and their rights, something that is very close to my heart.

Fun Facts about Tsakana

  • Her most interesting job was working at a local old age home
  • Tsakana’s most treasured possession is her Bible
  • Tsakana believes that the biggest problem facing the world today is the rapid climate change


Name: Isabella Agbor Ojong Ayuk
Age: 26
Home Town: Cross River
Isabella was raised in Ikom Local Government Area of the Cross River State. It is a largely agricultural area. Being raised by a widowed mother, Isabella has a passion for working with widows. She would love to work to create a small scale business to help raise money for scholarships for their children, home renovations and other basic needs.

In her Own Words
I want the judges to know that determination brought me this far and that I have learned to never give up in life.

Fun Facts about Isabella

  • She loves to cook
  • Isabella admires Angelina Jolie for her humanitarian services
  • Isabella is currently in the National Youth Service Corp in Nigeria


South Africa
Name: Melinda Bam
Age: 23
Home Town: Pretoria
Melinda Bam was born and raised in picturesque Pretoria, South Africa. She graduated from the University of Pretoria, South Africa with Honors. Melinda has a wide variety of hobbies through which she maintains a strong balance between sports and art. She aspires to one day start an internal marketing agency that would focus on corporate culture and business psychology.

In her Own Words
Defying the stigma that beauty queens are only pretty faces stimulates me.

Fun Facts about Melinda

  • She has designed her own swimwear collection
  • Melinda is a professional painter and artist in medium acrylic, oil and graphite
  • In 2007, Melinda co-wrote a book with her mother and sister that has been published


Name: Winfrida Dominic
Age: 19
Hometown: Dar Es Salaam
Winfrida Dominic moved all around her country of Tanzania throughout her childhood, experiencing different cultures and tradition everywhere she went. Growing up, her schools taught many of the traditional dances of Tanzania, a country with more than 100 different ethnic groups. Winfrida is currently studying History, Geography and English, in hopes of becoming an ambassador for her country in the future and engaging in charity work.

In her Own Words
I know how often at a young age, we are told that many of our dreams are not possible, that we are not good enough or pretty enough. I want my success to our shared story.

Fun Facts about Winfrida

  • Her most recently acquired hobby is netball
  • Winifrida collects pebbles from all of the different places she travels
  • The person who has most influenced her life is her father
So, BellaNaijarians, who do you think will bring the crown to Africa? Let us know.

Photo Credit: Miss Universe Official Website & Facebook Page


  1. Chester

    November 23, 2012 at 1:21 pm


  2. Damie Damie

    November 23, 2012 at 1:26 pm

    Miss Nigeria is the ugliest 🙁

    • tplusf

      November 24, 2012 at 2:40 am

      I second that!!!

    • yinka

      November 28, 2012 at 12:37 pm

      and the oldest. 🙁

  3. Bleed blue

    November 23, 2012 at 1:31 pm

    Miss South Africa sha….are you real? Looks like a painting…is that a good thing or a bad thing? I dunno jare…I’m loving Gifty though…those cheekbones….

    • Ginika

      November 23, 2012 at 3:01 pm


      That was exactly wwhat I said: ” those cheekbones”… I am giving my vote to Gifty and Melinda Bam is that gorgeous in real life plus she is really tall (and smart)!

    • nems

      November 23, 2012 at 3:16 pm

      EXACTLY what i was thinking . LOVING Gifty!. No offense ya’ll but not sure about the South African, it is like Barbie representing an African country and looks too Dutch!

    • cynthia

      November 23, 2012 at 3:38 pm

      The world is now very global (a melting pot) so I do not agree that she should not represent Africa. One day we will have a james bond, lol. Anyway the real issue issue in my opinion is that she’s more like to win because people still think that the only definition for beauty is white/light skin, blonde, long hair, blue eye, etc, while that is beautiful. Black needs to be accepted as beautiful too. Not just bald head, strong faced, structured bones, charcoal black models. All forms of black from the very light skinned to the inbetween to the charcoal black is beautiful.

    • nems

      November 23, 2012 at 4:50 pm

      Haha you are right Cynthia, I wonder if any European country will choose an African looking girl with african features not mixed or light skinned to represent them in anything just saying! Anyhoo I am looking forward to a Nigerian James Bond lol.

  4. TEE

    November 23, 2012 at 1:37 pm

    She isn’t ugly the photo didn’t do her justice

  5. extemy

    November 23, 2012 at 1:44 pm

    All these gals r jxt dia jo…no wow factor at all and pls wat is dat miss NIgeria is wearing n dat 19 years old lady r u sure dat ur age???

  6. Slim

    November 23, 2012 at 2:20 pm

    Bleed blue u r soo rite she looks like a painting ,soo golden. If she looks like that for real #wipes sweat#.what is Miss Nigeria wearing for Christ sake,@extemy, enuf 19yr old who looks older than that. Love that pic of Miss Ghana.

  7. tybay

    November 23, 2012 at 2:22 pm

    I like Miss Ghana and Miss Namibia

  8. anna

    November 23, 2012 at 3:19 pm

    ghana is the best, but they’re all plain. silverbird always makes nigeria have razz pictures. come on SILVERBIRD, you guys get millions from selling mbgn forms, you put up cheap shows for the crowning, at least take good pictures with all the millions you make yearly.mschew.

  9. Habeshababe

    November 23, 2012 at 3:25 pm

    Miss ethiopia handsdown is gowjassssss…..she deserves

  10. cynthia

    November 23, 2012 at 3:40 pm

    What is miss nigeria wearing?
    Does miss ghana want to be a nurse or doctor or medical journalist?

  11. Annie

    November 23, 2012 at 3:42 pm

    I love them all but Gifty from Ghana looks very pretty

  12. Rex

    November 23, 2012 at 4:05 pm


  13. Lisa

    November 23, 2012 at 4:27 pm

    Common guys can we at least learn to support our own am not attacking anyone one cos they gave their opinion but lets at least show isabella some love whether or not she will or not but please she is ours i know if she was your sister you would plead for people to vote her for me nigeria, ghana are very pretty girls isabella is qually very tall and she got qualities and i think she is intelligent too b4 people will say am even a friend or related to isabella just trying to let people reconsider and lets support her no matter what she is ours.

  14. Lisa

    November 23, 2012 at 4:29 pm

    Sorry i meant not even a friend or related to her just.

  15. Lilz

    November 23, 2012 at 4:31 pm

    I dont understand Isabella’s dress o…sooooo horrible

  16. Scarlet Xianne

    November 23, 2012 at 4:32 pm

    I think Isabella might actually stand a chance among the African contestants.

  17. Aibee

    November 23, 2012 at 4:51 pm

    Miss Namibia did it for me, GBAM!

  18. living the fab lane!

    November 23, 2012 at 5:39 pm

    Miss Ghana,Nambia,Tanzania and south Africa my best…can’t our Miss naija,protest about the choice of her dress?

  19. HRS

    November 23, 2012 at 5:41 pm

    Miss Tanzania can like to close her legs sha…… #JustSaying…..

  20. Glam

    November 23, 2012 at 6:59 pm

    Miss Ghana and Namibia are so stunning but patriotism beckons, so Isabella go get us the crown girl.

  21. Ready

    November 23, 2012 at 7:00 pm

    Wait,wasn’t cholera Isabella’s passion at MBGN? Seems to me she’ssaying whatever’s neceessary….please correct me if I’m wrong. I like Africa’s chances minus South African chick, Tanzanian chick, and that Naija babe. I don’t mind being proved wrong by both Tanzanian and Naij chicks though.

  22. Toksy

    November 23, 2012 at 7:46 pm

    for me miss namibia is top notch, she will represent africa well, miss nigeria should improve on her choice of cloth, but overall, namibia, nigeria & will make africa proud.

  23. iamfascinating

    November 23, 2012 at 8:22 pm

  24. the effing truth

    November 23, 2012 at 9:10 pm

    miss Ghana here we go….i pray she takes the crown…

  25. habba!

    November 23, 2012 at 10:04 pm

    south africa needs to be shamed! really. choosing a white women? really! have any european country had a 100% African, not biracial oo i said AFRICAN, to represent them? gosh Africa would forever be in the pits of darkness!

    • LP

      November 24, 2012 at 5:24 am

      I’m sure you are aware that there are white South Africans – born and raised in SA

      If they consider themselves African then there really shouldn’t be a problem.

      It’s just like saying because America is white man’s land, a black girl can’t represent them at Miss World.

    • ejiro

      November 26, 2012 at 9:26 pm

      America IS NOT the White man’s land. Native Americans ARE NOT White

    • Efua

      November 27, 2012 at 8:25 pm

      Go sit down and read a book.
      It is Ejiro said, it is not their country. Your black brothers and sisters were butchered so that those ones could live in luxury – and guess what? Nigeria could have suffered the same fate, it was the fact that our climate was to harsh for Oyinbo that prevented it.
      Look at your mouths. Melting pot ko, stirring kettle ni.

    • Ginika

      December 4, 2012 at 2:42 pm


      Thats like debating if the fulani tribe are really a part of Nigeria. We know their women could be very beautiful, so if they represented Nigeria thats how we will debate if they are truly Nigerians shey?

  26. chi

    November 23, 2012 at 10:05 pm

    to miss nigeria are a cameroonian or nigerian bc ur names are getting me confuse i know some part in nigeria may bear the Agbor but Ayuk and Ojong or typical cameroonian names

  27. chidi

    November 23, 2012 at 10:41 pm

    South africa is a rainbow nation the last time I checked ,they had a black miss sa last year anyway,hands down that malinda women is jowg bt I’m team giffy 🙂

  28. oyin

    November 23, 2012 at 11:29 pm

    for me miss ghana should take the crown, Isabella or whatever is your name shouldnt you be having kids already? you are a misfit in this career you choose not to leave, you look horrible

  29. Signature

    November 24, 2012 at 6:45 am

    Isn’t miss Nigeria’s age a bit too high for this competition? I dunno sha, she looks older than the rest, I doubt it gives her any advantage over them, it is a beauty contest after all.

  30. juju

    November 24, 2012 at 2:14 pm

    only miss angola really blew and s. africa blew my mind drest.. wheeeewwww

  31. Sunshine

    November 25, 2012 at 7:06 pm

    I like Ms. Gabon. I hate Ms. Nigeria’s dress….ewww!!!! and I really don’t think that Mauritius and Tanzania are pretty at all. Ms. South Africa picture looks retouched and her nose is so long. I hope an African girl can win but I usually support Caribbean girls winning cause that’s my region!!!! South Americans next cause they are pros at these types of contests, so an African girl would be my third choice to win. Wishing them all the best!!!

  32. FyneGirl

    November 25, 2012 at 11:49 pm

    Damn how unlucky miss Nigeria is 26 and looks 26 that’s the sad part

  33. laila

    November 26, 2012 at 10:15 am

    Haba, that photo of Miss NIgeria no set at all.

  34. temitope

    November 26, 2012 at 10:17 am

    na wa oooo, @fyne girl, how is being 26 and looking it a sad thing? some people sha

  35. Jane

    November 26, 2012 at 10:29 am

    It is very well indeed black is beautiful! These lovely ladies represent thier country for this coming Miss Universe 2012 with confidence..

  36. ofilispeaks

    November 26, 2012 at 3:40 pm

    Angola and Ghana for me.

    Miss Nigeria…emmm not quite.

  37. lilly

    November 26, 2012 at 5:23 pm

    lol, Miss Ethiopia likes reading the bible and i can see her boobies, humor!

  38. MissVee

    November 27, 2012 at 4:06 pm

    Gify ooooooo! beauty personified!

  39. MissVee

    November 27, 2012 at 4:06 pm

    Gifty i meant***

  40. beibi

    November 27, 2012 at 6:48 pm

    Miss South Africa and Miss Namibia hit d spot for me!!! is dat d best Nigeria can do????

  41. deedee

    November 28, 2012 at 10:47 am

    South Africa always has white gels representing them i cannot understand why. Angola will definite not win this time. As for Nigeria i have a 100 friends finer than that gel.sigh

  42. yudy

    November 28, 2012 at 11:23 am

    Miss Nigeria doesn’t even have a single glamour in her and her gown looks too tailored,like an ‘old school’ bride’s maid gown!Nigerians,have we actually lost taste in beauty?Na waoh!

  43. L.A Chick

    November 29, 2012 at 5:06 am

    Miss Ghana all the way!!!

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