Irene Muhikira Crowned Miss INILAK 2011 despite protests

  • By Linda Mbabazi
  • September 27, 2011
Miss INILAK 2011 Irene Muhikira poses with the 1st runner-up Tania Gasasira (left) and 2nd runner-up Solange Uwitonze (right). (Photos courtesy of Inyarwanda.com).

Drama unfolded Sunday night, September 25, as Irene Muhikira was crowned Miss Independent Institute of Lay Adventists of Kigali– INILAK.

The crowd that mostly consisted of INILAK students, shouted in protest when the judges announced Muhikira as Miss INILAK 2011.

Meanwhile, the audience’s favourite Henriette Cyuzuzo emerged as Miss Popularity, after failing in the question phase.

The 22-year-old, second year management student beat six other aspirants to take the title, despite nearly stumbling in her evening gown.

Muhikira told reporters later that she was overwhelmed by her new status and promised to be an exemplary student and a good ambassador of the university. She also pledged to promote culture and discipline, among other things at INILAK.

The panel of five judges to determine the winner included Premier Model Agency owner Jean Claude Ndayishimiye, RTV’s Lydia Umutoni, Dr. Jean Pierre Higiro, who initiated the beauty pageant in universities, CFM’s Eminente, and a INILAK teaching staff member.

Initially, the beauty pageant that was organised for the first time at INILAK, attracted more than 20 contestants at the preliminary stages. Out of these4, only six passed the set criteria.

The finalists strutted in traditional wear, creative costumes, causal, and finally in the evening gown competition.

Muhikira walked away with a cheque prize of Rwf100,000, a trip ticket to Brussels courtesy of Ethiopian Airlines, a brand new cell phone worth Rwf150,000 courtesy of MTN, an evening gown worth US$1000 by Big Deal Ltd and a one-year swimming and gym lease courtesy of Manor Hotel.

Muhikira also received Rwf100.000 from Carrefour des Artistes, in addition to other goodies. On Sunday night, she stayed at a US$315 a night suite at Manor Hotel as part of her privileges.

The first runners-up went to Tania Gasasira, who received Rwf50.000, a new phone worth Rwf120.000 courtesy of MTN and an air ticket to Dubai courtesy of Ethiopian Airways. The second runners-up Solange Uwitonze, received Rwf40.000, MTN airtime worth Rwf10.000 and Sulfo products for three months.

Meanwhile, Cyuzuzo got a lease at Golden Hill Hotel (every Friday) until December and at Cameria Tea House until the end of this year –various beauty services courtesy of Selena Cosmetics and products from Sulfo for one month. 

Speaking at the event, the Rector of INILAK, Dr. Jean Ngamije commended the sponsor of the event, INILAK Cultural Promotion for organising the event and, the contestants for the courage to participate in the beauty pageant. 

Dieudonné Ishimwe, the spokesperson of INILAK Culture Promotion Group, said the competition is more than just a beauty pageant for the girls as it ascertains a number of qualities from the contestants.

Various artistes including Kitoko, Jay Polly, The Brothers, Dream Boys, Kamichi, Uncle Austin, Allioni, Prince Kid and Danny entertained at the event.

The Independent Institute of Lay Adventists of Kigali was founded in 1997 by FAPADER, an Association of Adventist Parents for the development of Education in Rwanda. INILAK has two campuses, one in Kigali City, and its offshoot located in Nyanza District, Southern Province, which opened its doors in 2010.


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