- Onlookers were caught by surprise when a female was crowned as Mr NWU (North West University) 2019
- Hope Nokuthula Bhuda, who revealed herself to be lesbian, won the title in controversial fashion on Saturday
- Using the slogan, #BreakTheCode, the university seemingly challenged perceptions of beauty and sexuality
Onlookers were stunned and confused when the new Mr NWU (North West University) 2019 was crowned on Saturday.
The controversy was sparked as the winner was not a Mr, but actually a Miss.
For the first time since its inception, a female was crowned as the winner of the male pageant.
Hope Nokuthula Bhuda, who revealed herself to be lesbian, was elected as the winner.
Using the slogan, #BreakTheCode, organisers at the university seemed to challenge perceptions of beauty and sexuality in the build-up to the event.
SowetanLIVE reported that some of the marketing material may have inspired Bhuda to enter.
One of the flyers read: "Are you shorter than your friends? Are you a member of LGBTI+ family? Are you a human being? Are you bigger than size 32?"
Pageant organiser Tshepo Batlang conceded to playing his part in organising the event, but declined to comment on the outcome.
Louis Jacobs, a spokesperson for the university, said: "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.”
Briefly.co.za also understands that Bhuda was not allowed to discuss the victory with the media.
Briefly.co.za noted the viral reaction via social media as the victory caused quite a stir.
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.”
itumelengphage (@phageitumeleng) commented, “Their setting a ridiculous precedent,soon gays will compete with women for miss world crown.”
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