Kampala — Ms Quinn Abenakyo, the Miss Uganda 2018/19, has made history.
The 22-year-old became the first Miss Uganda to make it to the top five at last Saturday's Miss World finals held in Sanya, China. The other finalists were Miss Nicolene Pichapa Limsnukan (Thailand), Miss Vanessa Ponce De Leon (Miss Mexico), Kadijah Robinson (Jamaica), Maria Vasilevich (Belarus),
Ponce De Leon was eventually crowned Miss World while Limsnukan was the runner-up.
A few moments after her win, Abenakyo sent a Whatsapp message back home to Ms Janet Nalugya, the project coordinator at Miss Uganda, expressing her excitement and gratitude.
Ms Nalugya showed this reporter the message that read: "I just cannot contain this joy! I kept on saying For God and My Country, Uganda. All I wanted was for God to use me to make Uganda shine. I can't get over the moment."
Despite Abenakyo not winning the crown, she has done exceptionally well at the pageant, something many of her predecessors failed to do at the Miss World finals.
Her remarkable performance at the pageant started about a week back after securing a place in the top 30 at the Miss World finals. This
was after beating Miss Argentina in a head-to-head challenge where Abenakyo stated in her presentation that she would use Uganda's beauty with a purpose to fight teenage pregnancies.
Then, last Saturday, during the finale, when the number of contenders was slashed from 30 to 12, Ms Abenakyo still made it to the list. She was then crowned Miss World Africa after beating Murielle Ravina (Mauritius) before eventually securing another spot among the top five for the world title.
During a brief telephone interview with Daily Monitor yesterday, Ms Alice Kyamulesire, Abenakyo's mother, could not hold the excitement.
"I kept praying for Quiin and encouraging her (on phone) before the finale that she could do it and I am very happy she has made all of us proud," the mother said.
Abenakyo's father too, Mr Charles Sembera, could not conceal his joy.
"I am a very happy man. Quiin has made me proud," he said.