Twenty-two- year- old Amuche Ugwu on Sunday in Abuja emerged the winner of 2016 Miss Heritage Nigeria at the 5th edition of African Heritage Awards.
The African Heritage Awards and Miss Heritage Nigeria were organised in collaboration with the Federal Ministry of Information and Culture and the Nigeria Rebirth Project.
NAN reports that 16 contestants participated at the Miss Heritage Nigeria and were rated on their dressing, intellectual and dancing abilities
Ugwu, an indegene of Enugu State, representing FCT, beat Queen Iormua, who represented Benue to the first runner off position while Nengu Ibisiki, Miss Lagos, took the third runner up position.
A special award went to one of the contestant, Miss Kogi, Ugo Onyeanu who was crowned as Miss Bold and Beautiful Heritage Nigeria, 2016.
Miss Chino Emeka, the founder and organiser of the event, said it focused on promoting integrity and capabilities of individuals and organizations who distinguished themselves in raising cultural awareness and youth empowerment.
She said it was also meant to provide opportunities, through skill acquisition, entrepreneurship and leadership programmes.
“The platform will impact morals into Nigerians, especially young ladies who are to inspire their families and to build themselves in marriage.
“ We will be creating 1000 jobs for 1000 females across the country, therefore I urge all Nigerians to join hands with us to build a greater nation,’’ she said.
In her address Mrs Dayo Keshi, the Director General of National Council for Arts and Culture (NCAC) said there was an urgent need for the creative industry to be seen as a revenue generating avenue for the country.
“There is short fall in oil revenue, I urge Nigerians to find another oil in the creative industry.”
Keshi commended fashion designers for using their products to promote unity among Nigerians.
Also speaking , Mr Nhlanhla Shabangu, a South African and the Chief Organiser of Miss Heritage Africa, said the whole essence of the event globally was to celebrate and sell the African culture.
“It is time Africa celebrates itself and transports its culture round the world and this can only happen if we celebrate our culture.
“We need to export our dressing to the rest of the world and by God’s grace through Miss Heritage Awards, which is rated 9th in the world, we are doing so.
“Africa is one and Africa will conquer the world,” he said.
Miss Benita Akpana, the immediate past Miss Heritage, said the pageant helped in building the resilience of the girl-child.
She said, “It encourages and enables girl-child to believe in herself, associate and be able to stand out wherever she finds herself.”
Akpana, who still remains Miss Heritage Africa, thanked the organisers for providing opportunity to many young girls to discover their capabilities.
The event was attended by Mrs Titi Atiku Abubakar, wife of the former Vice President Atiku Abubakar, Mr Buhari Bala, a former Minister of State, Foreign Affairs and Charles Oputa, popularly called “Charley Boy”, among others.