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Miss South Africa pageant now open to transgender entrants

South Africa’s premiere beauty pageant has for the first time allowed transgender women to compete, a move that earned widespread praise on Wednesday.

“Trans women are eligible to enter the Miss South Africa pageant,” the Miss SA organisation said on its website as entries for the competition opened up on Monday.

“However, in order to be eligible to compete internationally, the contestant must be in possession of a valid South African ID document reflecting that their amended sex is female.”

The historic move was widely and excitedly embraced on social media.

Homosexuality is legal in South Africa, blazing a trail in a continent where homophobia is virulent and same-sex relationships are often repressed by law.

The competition itself was previously hailed for breaking beauty stereotypes by crowning Zozibini Tunzi, a short-haired woman with a darker complexion, as the 2019 winner.

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