Miss South Africa 2021 Meet the Selection Panel

06 Oct 2021 | Camilla Suarez

The Miss South Africa organization will be hosting the coronation for Miss South Africa 2021 on 16th October 2021 at Sun International Grandwest Arena where the representatives for next year’s editions of Miss Universe, Miss World, and Miss Supranational will be crowned. The Top 10 finalists will be competing for the national crown. This year’s batch boasts of extremely stunning and strong divas who refused to be silenced and commanded their powerful voices to be heard.

The organization has recently revealed the esteemed all-female selection panel for the 2021 edition of the pageant. This year, they bring the best of local and international great women as part of the panel of jury. So, without any further ado, let’s meet the Selection Panel of Miss South Africa 2021 –

Miss Universe 2015 Pia Wurtzbach

Pia Alonzo Wurtzbachis a Filipino-German model, actress and beauty queen who is best known for being crowned Miss Universe 2015. She represented Philippines at the global Miss Universe 2015, where she eventually won the title, becoming the first Filipina to win the pageant in four decades, and the first Filipina to win the pageant in the 21st century. Wurtzbach is a professional model, actress, host and TV personality.

Her advice to the Top 10 Finalists is, “You are you and that is your superpower. I know it’s easier said than done, but I think it’s so important to remind yourself to let the real you shine, instead of trying to portray someone on stage who you think the people and the selection panel want to see. You are part of the Top 10 for a reason. Embrace that. Having been in pageantry for quite a while made me realise that what’s inside of you matters just as much as what the audience is seeing on the stage.”



Dineo Ranaka

Dineo Ranaka is a South African radio and television presenter, actress, DJ and TV producer. She started as a radio trainee at 5fm and later joined Yfm as a radio show producer and thereafter a co-host of the then popular afternoon drive radio show called 'Essential Rush' with well-known Chilli M before taking over the show after Chilli M's departure. Her show, 'Dineo Live on Drive', gained her so much popularity and fame in South Africa and made her one of a few leading ladies in Radio in the country.

Her reality show, Dineo's Diary, is one of the longest running reality shows in South Africa and she wrapped it up at season 5. She currently produces and features in the spin-off of her own reality show The Ranakas, which now includes her entire family.



Miss South Africa 2018 Tamaryn Green

A South African model and beauty pageant titleholder who was crowned Miss South Africa 2018, Tamaryn Green represented South Africa in the Miss Universe 2018 competition and placed as the first runner-up. Green is the second South African to place as first runner-up in the history of South Africa's participation in the Miss Universe competition.

She shares, “Having experienced the journey myself has given me the knowledge to know what to look for in a Miss South Africa. I’m talking about looking at the finer detail and characteristics of each woman that might not always be obvious to the public. As a selection panel member I’ll reflect on responsibilities I had in my year of reign and identify whether our contestants are able to tackle these responsibilities. Miss South Africa is a job and it’s about finding the best women to perform that job with grace and consistency.”



Shannon Esra

Shannon Esra is a South African actress and singer. She studied Dramatic Arts at the University of the Witwatersrand receiving her BA (Hons) Degree in 2003. She won a Naledi Award for Best Performance by a Newcomer/Breakthrough (Female), in Dorothy Ann Gould's theatre production Japes for her portrayal of Neets. She also received a Fleur du Cap nomination for this role.

Explaining what she will be looking for as a selector, she shares, “As an ambassador for South Africa, Miss South Africa will need to know herself – truly understand who she is, what she stands for, what she believes in and what she has to offer. I will look for things like self-awareness, compassion, emotional intelligence. Will she be able to hold her own, walk into the centre of a bustling room, filled with people, and be able to capture people's attention through her power and her self-confidence? She will need to be able to captivate a room the moment she opens her mouth to speak, because words hold tremendous power, and she will be in a position of great responsibility.”



Prof. Mamokgethi Phakeng

Another phenomenal woman, Professor Mamokgheti Phakeng is a South African professor of mathematics education who in 2018 became a vice-chancellor of the University of Cape Town. She has been the vice principal of research and innovation, at the University of South Africa and acting executive dean of the College of Science, Engineering and Technology at UNISA. In 2018 she was an invited speaker at the International Congresses of Mathematicians.

She said, “I will be looking for a smart young woman with a memorable presence, magnetic personality and clear vision for how they will take advantage of the opportunity to use the Miss South Africa platform to make a sustainable societal impact. This is a lifetime opportunity for the finalists to connect and network with smart, ambitious women from all over the country. Irrespective of the outcome, each of the Top 10’s story is one of victory, and to the winner, remember that the crown does not define you, you define it.”



Miss Universe 2020 Andrea Meza

From Universe to the Miss South Africa 2021 stage, the newly crowned queen Andrea Meza will join the panel this year. With her vast pageant experience as a reigning Queen who also placed first runner-up at Miss World 2017, there is no doubt that she will add so much value in selecting a great woman fit for the role of Miss South Africa.

Since winning the title, she became the third Mexican woman to be crowned Miss Universe. She had previously been crowned Mexicana Universal 2020 and Miss Mexico 2017, and placed as the first runner-up at Miss World 2017. Elated with the opportunity, Andrea said, “I am so excited to announce that I am on the official selection panel of the Miss South Africa 2021 Final.”



Miss South Africa 1994 Basetsana Kumalo

A woman who has always remained a force to be reckoned with and Miss South Africa 1994 Basetsana Kumalo will be joining this year’s selection panel. She is a South African television personality, beauty pageant titleholder, businesswoman, and philanthropist. While representing South Africa at Miss World 1994, Kumalo became the first runner-up.

She reveals what she will be looking for in the winner, as she shared, “A young woman who has a clear vision of her life path, understands the world we live in and has an opinion of key issues impacting society and the world at large. A woman who has a sense of community and is not afraid to challenge the status quo. Someone who is uniquely and authentically themselves.”



Apart from the inspiring and exciting panel of judges for the national final, Former Miss Universe 2018 Catriona Gray and Miss Universe 2019 Zozibini Tunzi will be the backstage hosts at Miss South Africa 2021. They will be the eyes and ears on all the backstage exclusive content. The organization is excited to be back and provide a leading voice to not only the winners but also to all the young entrants and finalists who join the beauty competition as a part of their empowerment platform.