Evelyn Namatovu Karonde, 23, of Kampala, Uganda almost won Miss International 2019. She was named the second runner-up of the 59th edition of the international beauty pageant based in Japan.
This is the second time Uganda was represented in Miss International. Pierra Akwero, 32, the country’s first representative, was unplaced in the 49th edition in 2009.
Karonde will graduate from Makerere University Business School in Kampala in 2020, according to New Vision. She will receive her bachelor’s degree in Entrepreneurship and Business Management.
In Miss International 2019, Karonde was Best in Swimsuit. Melissa Jimenez, 20, of Maracaibo, Venezuela was Best in Evening Gown, Nguyễn Tường San, 19, of Hanoi, Vietnam was Best National Costume and Noémie Kribo Milne, 21, of Baie-Mahault, Guadeloupe was Miss Photogenic.
Hosted by Tetsuya Bessho, Ayako Kisa and Miss International 2016 Kylie Verzosa of the Philippines, the Miss International 2019 coronation night took place at the Tokyo Dome City Hall in Tokyo, Japan on November 12, 2019. Including Leeramwat, 83 candidates competed to become the successor of Miss International Mariem Velazco, 21, of Venezuela.
Crowned as Velasco’s successor was Sireethorn Leearamwat, 25, of Bangkok, Thailand while Andrea Toscano, 20, of Manzanillo, Mexico was the runner-up. Alejandra Vengoechea, 21, of Barranquilla, Colombia and Harriotte Lane, 18, of Newcastle upon Tyne, Tyne and Wear, North East England, United Kingdom were the respective third and fourth runners-up.
Leearamwat was also crowned Miss International Asia 2019. Her fellow continental queens were Miss International Africa 2019 Naomi Nucia Glay, 27, of Monrovia, Liberia, Miss International America 2019 Maria Jose Barbis, 23, of Chiclayo, Peru, Miss International Europe 2019 Elize Joanne de Hong, 25, of Rotterdam, Netherlands and Miss International Oceania 2019 Eunice Raquel Basco, 24, of Honolulu, Hawaii.
Jolene Marie Rotinsulu, 23, of Manado, Indonesia was Miss People’s Choice Award and Panasonic Beauty Ambassador. Sarra Brahmi, 25, of Sousse, Tunisia was Miss Visit Japan Tourism.
Miss International was organized by The International Culture Association. Besting 51 other candidates, Stella Márquez, 82, of Colombia won the inaugural pageant, which took place at the Long Beach Municipal Auditorium in Long Beach, California, United States on August 12, 1960.
Watch the coronation night of the 59th edition of Miss International here: