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Miss Abobi Helen Ekaya, 19, is an indigene of Yala Local Government Area,
Cross River State. The soft-spoken and intelligent 200 level student of
Mass Communication in the Cross River University of Technology (CRUTECH)
recently opened up to select journalists in her office in Calabar why she
is contesting for Miss Africa 2015, a beauty pageant to be hosted by the
Cross River State Government, coming up towards the end of this year.

According to her, being an ambassador for the continent would give her
opportunity to achieve her dreams of touching lives and advocating peace in
Africa.

My name is Abobi Helen Ekaya, I am 19 years old, I am a student of Cross
River University of Technology (CRUTECH) studying Mass Communication. I am
from Yala Local Governement Area, Cross River State.

*At what time did you start modeling*?

I actually started modeling in 2012

*What motivated you into modeling?*

I am stylist savvy, and I love good things and also, I try to look good
always in my little capacity because I believe that one must not have the
most expensive fabrics to look good. So, while I was growing up, I started
having passion for modeling because any time I wear a dress even though it
was not expensive people would admire it and compliment.

 

At the first instance, I felt like giving a trial in modeling to hear the responses or
feedback from people and to my greatest dismay, people started encouraging
me do modeling and right there, I discovered that it was an interesting
thing so I decided to go in fully. In 2012, I contested as Miss Catering.  I
won the contest. I have also participated in different projects, including
Project Model Nigeria-  a contest which was held recently in Calabar, Cross
River State capital, I emerged as one of the queens representing
South-South, South-East Nigeria.

*Why didn’t you pursue other ‘juicy’ career path instead of modeling?*

So many persons have their own perspective about some certain things and I
think it is whatever you feel you can do best that you go into because
individuals are different. God created us unique in his own image and
likeness and as humans, we decide on the lifestyle to live either good or
bad, for me, i have decided to live to good part of it and to see how I
could contribute to humanity as it is the essence of living.

Besides, I don’t do things because everyone is doing it; I do something
because I love it. I call myself original and I don’t allow anyone look at
me as photocopy, so I don’t like copying people. I live a very simple life
and it has worked well for me over the years.

*Are your parents comfortable with what you do?*

Yes, my parents are very supportive to me in my chosen career. They are the
ones that even sponsor most of the contests I embarked on. My parents are
my number first fans.

*Where do you hope to be in the next five years?*

Right now, I am still a student studying Mass Communication, but even as a
student, I make sure every single minute of my life count, on the judgment
day God will fault me if I did not use my time judiciously and as such, I
am very conscious of my life because I don’t want to live a wasteful live.
Besides, I hope that one day I will be crowned Miss World, representing the
world perhaps, I also see myself working in a reputable media firm like CNN
some day.

*Which other contests are you going for this year?*

I am gearing for the maiden edition of Miss Africa, a beauty pageant that
will be hosted by the Cross River State Government this year, 2015; the
event is coming alongside the Calabar Carnival, I think it is the best time
to hold the event.

*Why are you gunning for Miss Africa?*

So far we have every stage in contest and I think contesting for Miss
Africa will give me the privilege achieve my dreams hence, to carry out
some certain projects which I wish to do. I will use the platform to reach
out to the less privileged and also take Cross River State to every nooks
and cranny of Africa and the world at large.

Basically, I will also use the platform of Miss Africa to advocate for the
girl-child because the girl-child is more vulnerable to abuse in the
society.  Also, I will advocate peace in Africa, I have realized that there
are so many issues we need to tackle in Africa and with the Miss Africa
platform, I could meet with the African leaders to brainstorm on some of
these issues bordering us.

I have streamlined so many fabulous projects to carry out,  Just as my
Governor, Prof Ben Ayade always says that nothing is impossible to do as
far as one is determined to it. I also believe that having knowledge of
what you are looking for is paramount because if you do not have it then,
you are on your way to failure.

I have the exposure because I have traveled wide and the world being a
village has made it easier to learn and know so many things happening
around us.

I would use this opportunity to applaud the governor for his laudable
projects including the Miss Africa Pageant. I believe in him and will key
into his vision for the state if I eventually emerges winner of this
contest. I see Cross River better than Dubai in the nearest future.

*How would you describe the modeling industry in Africa?*

The entertainment or Modeling industry in Africa is thriving and it is
quite interesting to note that most persons who go into modeling learn so
much outside the business. It is not just going to the runway, but there
are other things you need to learn while on the runway. So many models from
this continent are doing great in own way.

*What are the challenges you have faced since you started modeling?*

The challenges I have faced are numerous but by the grace of God, I see
those challenges or obstacles in other way round as open doors. I believe
that success is not measured through your height or size but what is made
inside of you. I am just 19 years old but I do things like a 25 year old
woman.

*Are you attracted to modeling because it is a gold mine?*

No, no, I am into modeling because of my passion to affect lives positively
not for financial gains. I am in it because I see the sector as a veritable
platform where my dreams or goals can be realized. I believe in the axiom
that hard work pays.

*Do you think you have all it takes to become Miss Africa?*

Yes I do, I have the qualification, requisite skills and experience to
become Miss Africa I also have a large heart and strong bones that can
climb all mountains.

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