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Tribute - REALISATION OF A LITTLE GIRL’S DREAM; THE BIRTH OF MISS NIGERIA UK

MISS NIGERIA UK is a historic pageant that has positively taken over the sceptic reality of classic exhibition of beauties in the wide eyes of Africans particularly Nigerians domiciling in Diaspora.

A very curious surprise as it represents the most clamouring form, showcase the beauty, and brains of the Nigerian woman. Created in 1996 and hosted by Natasha Ojie Foundation, the pageant has continued to grow in size and glamour.

Miss Nigeria UK attracts contestants from all parts of the United Kingdom. Aside beauty and good educational stance contestants must be of Nigerian extraction and descent. The pageant owes its existence to the dream of a remarkable little girl, Natasha Isimeme Ojie (1988 – 1994).

Natasha’s brief life touched hearts and impacted lives. Natasha was diagnosed with a brain tumour when she was only four years old. For one and a half years she went through several surgical operations and suffered the terrible after effects of chemotherapy. Amidst all this, she showed unbelievable bravery, not permitting this tragically terminal illness to deter her.

Natasha put on a disarming smile, went to school as usual and never looked ill. At the Great Ormond Street Hospital where her condition was being managed, the staff contacted the starlight Foundation, a charity that supports the terminally ill. Starlight Foundation sought to make Natasha’s final wishes come true. Her demands were simple; to meet Cilia Black and visit Disneyland. To her greatest delight, her wishes were granted. While Natasha’s sister and brother sought to buy toys and other trivia at Disneyland, Natasha curiously bought herself a single item, which turned out to be a symbolic cornerstone for the Miss Nigeria UK beauty pageant.

She bought a crown and said daddy, I am a queen, as she put it on. Sadly, four days after her return from Euro Disney, she fell desperately ill and it was discovered that the tumour had spread to cover Natasha’s entire brain. Now bed-ridden, she rose one morning to reveal that she had a spectacular dream; she was a queen, riding a white horse in a beautiful place, surrounded by people dancing and jubilating. Natasha died a few weeks later. Indeed, Natasha’s parents were inspired by their little girl’s courage and vision in the face of death. Natasha left them with a legacy of a sense of triumph.

It slowly became clear that the only way to keep Natasha’s memory alive forever was to build a project around her dream of becoming a queen, hence the concept of Miss Nigeria UK. Miss Nigeria UK is aimed at supporting African children, portraying a positive image of Nigeria and to promote the campaign for breast cancer awareness.

The latest edition, which is slated for the last weekend of November 2016, is currently in the audition stage. With its continuous bulging fame, meanwhile, see past queens

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