Africa

Maristella Okpala biography: 13 things about Miss Universe Nigeria 2021

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Maristella Chidiogo Okpala is a Nigerian cabin crew, dental technician, model and beauty queen. The eldest among four siblings, she was born and raised in Enugu State, Nigeria but she later moved to Anambra State, Nigeria.

Okpala attended Peace Nursery and Primary School for her elementary education and Federal Government College for her secondary education, which are both in Enugu State. She later went to the Federal School of Dental Technology and Therapy, also in Enugu State.

Based in Enugu States, Anne’s Couture Modelling Agency gave Okpala her first opportunity in modelling. Here are 13 more things about her:

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  1. She is the eldest among four siblings.
  2. She is Miss Style Queen, Nigeria 2012.
  3. On January 1, 2015, she represented Nigeria at Supermodel International 2014 at the Aetas Hotel and Residence Ballroom in Bangkok, Thailand. She finished in the Top 10.
  4. In 2016, she became an ambassador for Nigerian fashion brand Rikaoto By Me.
  5. When she competed at Most Beautiful Girl in Nigeria (MBGN) 2017, she won the Miss Photogenic award and finished in the Top 15.
  6. She auditioned for Miss Earth Nigeria 2018 in July 2018. She won the title on September 8, 2018. She was unplaced when she represented Nigeria at Miss Earth 2018 in Pasay City, Metro Manila, Philippines on November 8, 2018.
  7. As Miss Earth Nigeria 2018, she started her Pick That Plastic and Stay in School project in February 2019. The project supports waste management and recycling while sensitizing school children to do the same.
  8. In 2019, she lived in Dubai, United Arab Emirates while working with Emirates Airline as a cabin crew member. 
  9. She is Naesim International Queen of the Year 2019.
  10. Amid the new coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic in 2020, she relaunched her Pick That Plastic and Stay in School project.
  11. On September 18, 2021, she represented Anambra State at MBGN 2021 and competed against 36 other candidates at Eko Hotel, Victoria Island, Lagos, Nigeria. She was runner-up to Oluchi Madubuike. She and Madubuike will represent Nigeria at Miss Universe 2021 and Miss World 2021, respectively.
  12. She was 28 years old when she was crowned Miss Universe Nigeria 2021.
  13. In December 2021, she will represent Nigeria at Miss Universe 2021 in Eilat, Israel.
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