At an annual beauty pageant held in London, Jamaica’s Toni-Ann Singh was crowned the Miss World 2019 and India’s Suman Rao became the second runner-up.
The 23-year-old Jamaican was declared the winner at a televised event, hosted by British television personality Piers Morgan, held at Excel London on Saturday (December 14).
Singh is a student of women’s studies and psychology at Florida State University and aspires to be a medical doctor.
The Jamaican’s Indian roots come from her Indo-Caribbean father Bradshaw Singh and African-Caribbean mother Jahrine Bailey.
As the tradition follows, last year’s winner Mexico’s Vanessa Ponce de Leon crowned the Miss World at an event which echoed unstoppable applause from audiences when Singh sang Whitney Houston’s hit “I Have Nothing”.
Singh celebrated her win on Instagram, expressing gratitude to her fellow Jamaicans for “believing in me”.
“My heart is filled with love and gratitude. Thank you so much for believing in me. You pushed me to believe in myself. I am not only honoured but humbled to be the 69th Miss World,” she said.
“Thank you to my family and to my friends. The love and support you poured into me now allow me to pour into the world. My mother @jahrinebailey, I love you I love you I love you. I wish to become even half the woman you are. You are my strength, my number one supporter/cheerleader/fan and my absolute best friend,” she said.
Singh also urged girls all around the world to believe in themselves and their dreams.
“Please know that you are worthy and capable of achieving your dreams. This crown is not mine but yours. Its for you to truly understand that no matter where you’re from and the cards you’re dealt in life – your dreams are valid. You have a PURPOSE,” she added.
Singh is the fourth Jamaican to win the coveted pageant. The country has previously won Miss World titles in 1963, 1976 and 1993. She was closely followed by France’s Ophely Mezino, who was adjudged first runners-up, while Indias Suman Rao was declared second runners-up.
Rao, 20, a CA student hailing from Rajasthan, was crowned Miss India World 2019 in June this year.
(With inputs from agencies)