#MissSAChallenge: gloves, hygiene and angry tweets flood SA Twitter

demi-leigh nel-peters #misssachallenge miss south africa

Yesterday Miss South Africa Demi-Leigh Nel-Peters was in Soweto serving soup and bread rolls to kids. Today, it’s one of Twitter’s top trending topics.

Why? Three words: gloves, hygiene and #MissSAChallenge.

On Wednesday afternoon, this tweet published by the official Miss South Africa Twitter account became viral.

Noticeably, Nel-Peters is wearing gloves in these pictures. And Twitter wanted to know why.

Some users gave their opinions.

Some also called on the Miss South Africa account to delete the post.

“Please may you delete this post. There is no greater disrespect for the BLACK children that are on these pictures than those GLOVES!” read one tweet.

As a result of the social media attention this post received, the Miss South Africa account began trending around 3pm Wednesday afternoon.

On Wednesday evening, Nel-Peters took to Twitter to address the incident, apologising for offending anyone and clarifying questions users had. This tweet also went viral.

“To everyone asking about the gloves, I truly hope that you’ll hear my heart and understand that it came from a place of wanting to do good,” reads the tweet.

Twitter however, didn’t quite believe her.

“And we say this because we can spot the difference here. White children are cleaner and need no gloves, isn’t it?” one user writes.

Others though defended Nel-Peters.

Nevertheless, Miss South Africa’s video seems to have spurned a new ironic challenge.

Dubbed the #MissSAChallenge, it seemingly required people to take pictures of themselves preparing food while wearing gloves or face masks.

It began trending Thursday afternoon in South Africa, and continues to gain steam.

Sun International has since issued the following statement regarding the gloves:

All volunteers, including Demi-Leigh, wore disposable sanitary gloves while working with the food and handing it out. It is standard hygiene practice that ready-to-eat food be prepared and served without bare hand contact.

While Demi was handing out food she was asked to pose for photos so still had the gloves on.
She did not wear disposable gloves throughout the entire visit. She was also involved in handing out blankets to those who attended.

Andy Walker, former editor


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