Zozibini Tunzi, 26, will represent South Africa in Miss Universe 2019. It is the 68th edition of the international beauty pageant run by the Miss Universe Organization, which is currently owned by the WME/IMG talent agency.
Tunzi was born in Tsolo, Easter Cape, South Africa on September 18, 1993 but grew up in Gardens, Cape Town, South Africa. In 2018, she earned her bachelor’s degree in public relations and image management from Cape Peninsula University of Technology in Cape Town.
In 2017, Tunzi represented Tsolo in Miss South Africa. She was one of the semi-finalists.
Two years later, on August 9, 2019, Tunzi returned to the same beauty pageant and was crowned Miss South Africa 2019 at the Sun Arena at Time Square in Pretoria, Gauteng, South Africa making her South Africa’s Miss Universe 2019 candidate. She bested 15 other finalists.
Runner-up to Miss South Africa 2019 was Sasha-Lee Olivier, 26, of Alberton, Gauteng. She will represent South Africa in Miss World 2019.
It was Tamaryn Green, 25, of Paarl, South Africa who crowned Tunzi. The former was named Miss Universe 2018 first runner-up at the Impact Arena in Bangkok, Thailand on December 17, 2018.
Including Tunzi, more than 90 candidates from all over the world are expected to compete in Miss Universe 2019. The coronation night will take place at the Tyler Perry Studios in Atlanta, Georgia, United States on December 8, 2019.
Steve Harvey is returning to host the Miss Universe 2019 coronation night. It will be aired live on Fox as well as on Telemundo for Spanish-speaking viewers.
Catriona Gray, 25, is the reigning Miss Universe 2018. Born in Cairns, Queensland, Australia on January 6, 1994 to a Scotland-born Australian father and a Filipino mother, she is the fourth Miss Universe from the Philippines following Gloria Diaz, Margarita Moran and Pia Wurtzbach, who were crowned in 1969, 1973 and 2015, respectively.
Gray’s successor will wear a new crown made by Swiss and Emirati luxury jeweler Mouawad. Founded in Beirut, Lebanon by David Mouawad in 1891, the company making and selling jewelry, objects of art and luxury watches is headquartered in Geneva, Switzerland with a Middle East headquarters at Jumeirah Lakes Towers in Dubai, United Arab Emirates.
If Tunzi wins Miss Universe 2019, she will be the third titleholder of the beauty pageant to come from South Africa. The first two were Margaret Gardiner and Demi-Leigh Nel-Peters, who were crowned in 1978 and in 2017, respectively.