KAMPALA/NAIROBI – Grace Msalame, a Kenyan media personality who was used on the recent ‘Uganda Miss Curvy’ pageant poster has sued the organisers of the event for using her photo without her consent to promote their tourism sector.
Msalame has sued the organisers and the government of Uganda seeking Shs36b Ugandan shillings for having defamed her character, reputation and damaged her brand by using her photo as an advert for the miss curvy contest.
“I would like to categorically state that my likeness and image were used without my permission in Miss Curvy Uganda. I take great exception to the fact that my image and likeness are being used to propagate, disseminate and encourage the objectification of women’s bodies, I don’t endorse or agree with such a message or anyone who is a creator or supporter of the idea that women’s bodies are tourist attraction sites,” Masalame stated.
She has also disassociated herself from the campaign and condemned its organisers its moves.
“I take this opportunity to clearly state that I strongly and categorically reject the message that women’s curves, arms, waists and bodies are stories to sell tourism and the notion that tourism begins with women and their bodies. I strongly reject the idea that women’s bodies can be used by state agencies to generate revenue. I reject the message that pits women of different sizes against each other. I am in no way associated with the activity that objectifies women in the name of promoting culture. Women are people, not sex objects,” she added.
— Grace S Msalame (@GraceMsalame) February 7, 2019
It should be remembered that different people and organizations have come out condemning the Miss curvy contest including the minister of Ethics and Integrity Fr. Simon Lokodo, who said there are many tourist attractions that can be used to market tourism in the country other than women.
The Arch Bishop of the Church of Uganda, Stanley Ntagali said the miss curvy contest is exploitive and disgusting.
However, with all the criticisms of the contest, the organisers seem not bothered and not willing to cancel the competitions.