by crossriverwatch admin
Africa is unique for its rich cultural possession, but not without threats to its existence by the western winds.
Amidst these fears however, stands tall; a Beauty Queen who despite her age, of 21 years, she dares against all odds to restore this moribund glory.
Miss Fatima Ugenyi Adie is reigning queen adorning the “Obudu Face of Culture 2012” crown and she says she is ready to carve a niche by taking African culture to enviable heights.
CrossRiverWatch, caught up with her recently at Peperoni Restaurant, Calabar; where she and her Manager and Organizer of the Obudu Face of Culture pageant, Francis Akpeke went to cool off.
After a photo session in the restaurant’s studio, from where she dedicated some for this publication, she settled to grant this interview in a soft spoken ambiance and such delectable effervescence.
When asked about her journey so far, with a blooming smile and a somewhat eavesdrop “thank you,” Miss Adie began to narrate how her journey in the world of pageantry began.
Beginning from when she first clinched the coveted Miss Accountancy crown in her department, way back in 2010, at the Cross River University of Technology, CRUTECH, where she studied Accountancy, she moved on to challenge for and also win the Obudu Face of Culture pageant. Twice in her life has she ventured into pageantry, twice has she won, as if pageantry has a charm on her.
As the interview proceeded with the 21 year old beauty queen, dappling every moment with a fragrant smile, it was clear that she isn’t new in the ball room of entertainment doubling as a model and as a Director of House of Lavenger, a modeling agency based in Calabar, which she co-pioneered.
Enumerating the numerous opportunities her venture has brought her, Miss Adie obliged
“I have met people I never expected to meet before; I have met one or two celebrities… I am also now known”
She also attributes the contract she won recently to organize Ogoja Carnival and a beauty pageant in CRUTECH as part of the recognition her landmarks in pageantry has availed her.
Giving a quick assessment of the modeling industry in Calabar, Queen Fatima frowned at the little pay it brought to the practitioners in the State as compared to other places like Lagos where modeling makes is a major source of livelihood. She also frowns at the level of encouragement the venture attracts from both government and the private sector.
Narrating what inspired her to contest for the Obudu Face of Culture, this is what she has to say:
“I grew up in Obudu.
“I stayed there and loved everything concerning culture.
“When I heard about the Obudu Face of Culture,
“That was the first time I heard about it
“I decided to go for it”.
Then about her prospect and aspiration in the pageantry world, Miss Fatima Adie dropped what seem as a tall dream…
“I really wish to re-brand culture in Africa.
“This is because it is one thing that makes us known,
“It should not be joked with.
“It’s something in me I really want to do,
“I have seen pictures, watched movies,
“And they describe a people and I want to do the same too for our people
“I know this may look too herculean a task to achieve with a snap of fingers,
“We can still try our best” she dares.
Despite her exploits in modeling and pageantry, the beauty queen blushed at modeling disclosing that she would hardly continue with the venture after school.
But to alley the fear that she would ever let Mama Africa down, Fatima assured that even while facing other careers she would never let go her dream of giving support to any initiative that would promote Africa’s rich indigenous bearing.
Finally, when asked how she copes with advances from men concomitant with the venture, she flares up!
“It’s so annoying when most of those persons you meet turn out to be something else,
“Only because they want to offer help to you
“Though, it’s a challenge for me to know that I can do without them”.
On her level of preparedness for the handing-over of the Obudu Face of Culture crown to another queen in a ceremony expected to hold by September this year, she says she is prepared and hopeful that potential sponsors including the Cross River state government would assist in the organizing of the ceremony to bring the event to its desired taste.
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