President Zuma Congratulates Miss Universe Demi-Leigh Nel-Peters

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Miss South Africa Demi-Leigh Nel-Peters (left) reacts as she is crowned Miss Universe 2017 by Miss Universe 2016 Iris Mittenaere in Las Vegas, Nevada.

This year's pageant drew 4.4 million total viewers and a 1.1 rating, down 15 and 27 percent from last year, TV Line reports, giving the annual event its second-lowest numbers ever.

More than 90 women from around the world are set to take the stage in the Miss Universe pageant.

The 22-year-old business management graduate said she is an advocate of self-defense for women and hopes to make it part of her platform as Miss Universe.

For the first time since 2010, Jamaica has secured a top 3 placement in the Miss Universe pageant.

She noted this would also help other women overcome their fears.

Miss South Africa was crowned Miss Universe. Along with that, numerous contestants are recent high school graduates, who delay education just to participate in Miss Universe, and numerous times don't pursue education afterwards. Miss Universe realized that this controversy between the public and them in regards to the lack of an educational requirement was present and announced that they would extend the requirement of age one year, form 26 to 27, so the contestants could finish their degrees.

Miss Colombia Laura Gonzalez finished as first-runner up while Miss Jamaica Davina Bennett was named second-runner up.

Miss USA Kára McCullough, Miss Canada Lauren Howe, Miss Spain Sofia del Prado and Miss Brazil Monalysa Alcântara also made the Top 10 list.

While a majority of South Africans were showering Nel-Peters with praises and congratulating her after her win, some, including highly opinionated South African poet Ntsiki Mazwai, think Miss Jamaica should have won.

"The Universe is now brighter with you as a shining star".

The women representing Thailand, Sri Lanka, Ghana and South Africa were chosen to move forward in the competition for the Africa and Asian Pacific region.

Seeing women of color compete in pageants while rocking their natural hair is an empowering deviation from seeing the blown-out, straighter hairstyles contestants traditionally wear.

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