Hope Nokuthula Bhuda, a known lesbian was reportedly announced on Saturday, August 10 as Mr NWU 2019, and the development has blown the minds of some men as the winner is a miss instead of Mr.
According to Briefly.co.za, organisers the North West University wanted to challenge perceptions of beauty and sexuality in this year’s edition of the pageant, using #BreakTheCode.
Some of the fliers that advertised the event and probably motivated Hope Nokuthula Bhuda to register for it made room for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and Intersex community.
"Are you shorter than your friends? Are you a member of LGBTI+ family? Are you a human being? Are you bigger than size 32?" one of the fliers read.
The controversy surrounding the pageant has been so intense that nobody wants to bear the brunt. Pageant organiser Tshepo Batlang is reported as saying he played his role in putting the event together, but had nothing to do with its outcome.
The University’s spokesperson, Louis Jacobs is quoted as saying: "Gender and sexuality awareness is a critical component of the diversity focus of the NWU and we respect the rights of all our staff and students to express themselves in whatever way they wish to.”
It is unclear what criterion was used in determining the winner of the pageant, and how come no male qualified to be crowned.
What is equally baffling is how being a lesbian qualifies someone to partake in an all-male event and win over the men.
Meanwhile, the development has triggered reactions from some South African social media users.
Coach Butler (@s_butler2015) said, “I may not be "politically correct" on this one...and though I'm beyond accepting of people living their lives as they so choose.. For me, "MR" means MALE! Now if the new "Mr NWU" is "transgender" and identifies as male, that's another thing to consider.”
Another user, itumelengphage (@phageitumeleng) also said: “Their setting a ridiculous precedent,soon gays will compete with women for miss world crown.”