Lalela Mswane may not have the support of her entire country, but she does have the thumbs up from several Miss Universe beauty pageant predictors.
The Miss SA winner is currently in Eilat, Israel ahead of the finale on Sunday night.
And despite the backlash from her home country, the 24-year-old LLB graduate is expected to make the Top 16 at very least, claim experts.
LALELA MAKES TOP PREDICTIONS
According to various pageant prediction videos, Lalela Mswane has “earned” a spot in the Top 16.
Siera Bearchell, who represented Canada at the Miss Universe pageant in 2016, said of Lalela: “When I saw her perform at Miss South Africa when she won the title, if she brings that to Miss Universe I would be shocked not to see her in the Top 16.
“Her confidence, her speaking skills, her aura, she really has it all”.
Pageant predictor Luis Portelles claimed that Lalela was one of his “early favourites” to take the title of Miss Universe.
He said: “I am amazed by her communication skills and I believe that is really her strength. Lalela delivered a good performance, and if the organisation is looking for someone to speak, to be eloquent and do more intellectual work, then she will be an amazing choice”.
Fellow predictor Adam G added: “For someone who has been pressured to back out of the competition, Miss South has enough justification to be at least in the Top 16.
“She’s charming, eloquent and full of personality. I also love how she adopted the pageant’s green agenda theme by proudly wearing recycled outfits to the competition”.
SUPPORT FROM FAMILY AND FRIENDS
Meanwhile, Lalela Mswane has received the full support from friends and family back home in South Africa.
The Miss SA organization posted a video of fellow pageant contestants who wished her well ahead of her final performance on stage. Included in the clip were several contestants from the Miss SA Top 10.
Jeannie Mulder: “My dearest Lali. Go show the world your heart the way you showed me. I know you are going to achieve incredible things”.
Tiffany Francis: “I’m sending you all my love because I know you are going to make us incredibly proud. I cannot wait for the universe to see your heart and the greatness you have in you”.
Bianca Bezuidenhout: “We know it’s your destiny so go and shine out there. We cant wait to see you rock that stage”.