The Ugandan Ministry of Tourism has added curvy and sexy women to the list of tourism products.
While unveiling the initiative in Kampala on Wednesday, State minister for Tourism Godfrey Kiwanda, said a beauty pageant dubbed ‘Miss Curvy Uganda’ had been launched to select sexy curvaceous women. 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 said.
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 on Wednesday.
Tourism is a top foreign exchange earner for Uganda. Last year, the country earned $1.4 billion (KSh140 billion) from the sector, according to government statistics.
Most tourists visit Uganda to tour national parks for diverse wildlife species such as gorillas and birds among other animals. They also love viewing the River Nile, crater lakes and mountains.
Curvaceous women is the latest attraction the ministry hopes will increase revenue earnings.
'Flaunt their endowments'
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 slender and pretty faces which are a more western way of defining beauty, most African women are uniquely built and this does not make them any less attractive.
Under this campaign, the Tourism ministry officials will tell 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.
"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,” Ms Leilah Nakabira an actress said.