IN what can be viewed as a rare occurrence, 18-year-old Hannah Chiwenda last Friday evening outwitted 13 other contestants by scooping the first Miss Pageant Zambia 2012 and Miss Personality crowns.
At the same function, 20-year-old Matildah Tonga was crowned First Princess while Natasha Chama, 18, proved to her parents that their presence was not in vain by scooping the Second Princess prize.
As a grand prize, Hannah will spend a week with a partner of her choice at South Africa's Emperor's Palace, an undisclosed purse money, an Itel mobile phone and a wall clock.
For the Miss Personality award, Hannah won an Itel mobile phone and purse money.
Matildah's prizes were a night for two at Radisson BLU Hotel, purse money- and a wall clock.
On the other hand, Natasha got away with dinner for two at Hotel Inter-continental, purse money and a wall clock as her prizes.
Besides the aforementioned prizes, the trio also scooped a one year contract apiece with LTC modeling agency.
Speaking in an interview after being declared winner, Hannah said, "I am grateful to God that I have won because without Him I wouldn't have done it."
In apparent reference to the beauty contest's theme: "Concerted effort in Cervical and Prostrate Cancer sensitization", Hannah said there is need for people to "join forces" in the fight against breast and cervical cancer.
In the run up to the grand finale, the 14 contestants were attached to the Cancer Diseases Hospital for five days awareness training.
Hannah completed her secondary education at Arakan High School in 2011 and intends to pursue Computer Science and Networking at Evelyn Hone College this year.
The other winners could not be contacted for comment as they were mobbed by relatives and friends, but Times Entertainment caught up with Natasha's mother, Musamba Kumwenda, who described her daughter's achievement as pleasurable and joyful.
Ms Kumwenda said also that her daughter's achievement did not come as a surprise as the 18-year- old had been modeling since she was a toddler.
"I was expecting her to win because modeling has been part of her life since childhood," she said.
Ms Kumwenda said she would have loved her daughter to scoop the grand prize, but that one had to start from somewhere in every contest and that her feat was a beginning of bigger things to come.
The maiden beauty pageant was not only about cat-walking as both renowned and up-coming artistes were on hand to spice up the event, which was arguably a success despite tourism and art minister Sylvia Masebo not turning owing to other commitments.
Among the performing "heavyweights" on the night were Chika Lupupa, Judy Anaka, CQ Mzukulu as well as One J and Robby Kalijo popularly known as the Vuvuzela Boys.
In the up-coming artistes' list, Dezert Roze and three dancing queens were arguably the darling of the audience, judging by the cheering and photographs received while on stage and hugs Dezert Roze got after the performance.