HARARE, Zimbabwe – Last year, Miss Zimbabwe quit after photographs of the beauty queen posing naked emerged on social media. This year's Miss Zimbabwe faces a similar scandal.
Organizers of the Miss Zimbabwe pageant said they are investigating 25-year-old Emily Kachote two weeks into her reign after photos that allegedly show her nude appeared on the Internet.
Kachote, who would represent Zimbabwe at the Miss World finals later this year, will be dethroned if the photos are authentic, pageant spokesman Tendai Chirau said this week.
The contestants signed contracts declaring they had never posed nude before the pageant and that, in the event of winning the crown, they would not pose naked during the yearlong tenure as Miss Zimbabwe.
Kachote told H Metro, a Zimbabwean tabloid newspaper, that she suspected "these pictures" would emerge but "it happened a long time ago."
She referred to a date with a man whose home she visited, saying: "We had some drinks and I had no control over everything that happened that night. I no longer have anything to do with the guy."
Some people in Zimbabwe sympathize with Kachote, saying those who leak nude photos in such cases deserve criticism.
"This is another form of abuse. Everyone is entitled to privacy and imagine the trauma she could be going through," Zimbabwe's Herald newspaper quoted musician Albert Nyathi as saying. "Women are abused a lot in Zimbabwe and it's high time it should stop."