Kampala- The Ministry of Tourism has added curvy and sexy Ugandan women to the list of tourism products to attract tourists.
Unveiling the initiative in Kampala yesterday, the State minister for Tourism, Mr Godfrey Kiwanda, said a beauty pageant dubbed ‘Miss Curvy Uganda’ has been launched to select sexy curvaceous women and the finalists will be selected in June.
“We have naturally endowed nice looking women that are amazing to look at. Why don’t we use these people as a strategy to promote our tourism industry?” Mr Kiwanda wondered, pointing at “a sample” of beautiful women at the press conference yesterday.
The beauty queens in sleek and revealing clothes, kept moving around Mestil Hotel pool side as they took photos with the event organisers including Mr Kiwanda.
Top foreign exchange
Tourism is a top foreign exchange earner for Uganda and the country last year earned $1.4b (Shs5 trillion) from the sector, according to government statistics.
Most tourists visit Uganda to tour national parks for diverse wildlife species such as gorillas, birds and other animals. They also love viewing the River Nile, crater lakes and mountains, among others.
Curvaceous women as a product, is the latest attraction the ministry hopes to attract more tourists and increase revenue earnings.
Ms Ann Mungoma, the lead organiser for the beauty pageant, is optimistic that when these ladies flaunt their endowments, it will enhance the visibility and appreciation of Ugandan people.
“Miss Curvy is an event that will bring out the endowment of the real African woman. It is an exceptional event that will see young ladies showcase their beautiful curves and intellect,” said Ms Mungoma. Only those aged 18 and below 35 are eligible to participate, organisers said.
Asked if the pageant does not offend the conservative culture of Ugandan society, Mr Kiwanda said Uganda has long appreciated smaller bodied women as a hallmark of beauty and the curvy pageant is just another campaign aimed at appreciating beauty in diversity.
Ms Mungoma said since most pageants celebrate slenderness and pretty faces which are a more western way of defining beauty, most African women are uniquely built which does not make them any less attractive.
Under this campaign, the Tourism ministry officials will tell the various stories relating to the background of different shapes and curves that Ugandan beauties have as well as the different cultures that will be displayed by the contestants under the Tulambule (let’s explore) campaign.
It is not the right approach but then when you look at social media, people post their pictures they get followers and many likes, so those followers could come to Uganda to tour. So curvy women could post on social media and get followers. Though there should have had better things to look at,” Ms Leilah Nakabira women activist and actress.
For the male whom they are taking .That is backward, barbaric and abuse of women’s rights. Do you think tourists come here for women? That is portraying Uganda in a myopic way. Whoever said it should apologise to the women, they are mothers,” Ms Ritah Aciro the executive director Uganda Women’s Network.
It is not the right approach. That is idolizing women as objects like how you look at objects that’s how they will look at women,” a woman activist from Bernic Woman.