In a dazzling competition that brought together captivating contestants from across Uganda, 19-year-old Nabukonde Kiyayi Ruokaya, representing the Eastern region, claimed the prestigious title of Miss Tourism Uganda 2023. The grand finale, themed “Greening Tourism,” unfolded in all its splendor at the renowned Serena Hotel in Kampala on September 9th, 2023.
Nabukonde’s victory signifies not only her personal triumph but also her commitment to sustainable tourism and the empowerment of women in all sectors of society. Her aspiration to champion greener tourism practices is deeply rooted in her Mwambu clan heritage.
In a fiercely competitive showdown, Nabukonde outshone Apero Martha from Karamoja, who secured the first runner-up position, and Akello Mary from Teso region, who proudly claimed the second runner-up title.
The winners received a slew of accolades and incentives in recognition of their remarkable accomplishments. Nabukonde’s victory was rewarded with a plot of land, complete with title, generously provided by Three Ways Property Consultants. Additionally, she received a round-trip air ticket to Dubai courtesy of Uganda Airlines, a year-long subscription from Platinum Wellness SPA, and a scholarship from DAS Aviation.
Apero, the first runner-up, was presented with a return ticket to Mombasa from Uganda Airlines and a six-month subscription to Platinum Wellness SPA. Akello Mary, the second runner-up, was granted a three-month subscription to the same wellness haven.
Minister of ICT and National Guidance Hon. Chris Baryomunsi, addressing the audience, reaffirmed Uganda’s commitment to strengthening the tourism sector and encouraged Ugandans to explore the country’s diverse array of tourist sites.
In her gracious acceptance speech, Nabukonde attributed her triumph to her extensive knowledge of Uganda’s diverse tourism destinations, her unyielding work ethic, and her unwavering faith. She pledged to collaborate with stakeholders to elevate the nation’s tourism sector to new heights.
Sandra Nguna, the spokesperson for Miss Tourism Uganda, highlighted the extensive training provided to the winners, focusing on wildlife and tourism-related aspects. She called for continued support for beauty pageants, emphasizing their role in empowering contestants with newfound confidence.
Nabukonde’s win catapults her to represent Uganda in the upcoming Miss Tourism International Competitions scheduled for November in Malaysia.
The 2023 edition of Miss Tourism Uganda marks the pageant’s 11th anniversary, a testament to its growth and success over the years.