KELVIN KACHINGWE, Lusaka
RUNWAY model Petita Mwanza, the winner of Zambia’s first ever Top Model competition, is evidently overly excited. The reason is simple – she has passed the much-dreaded Zambia Institute of Advanced Legal Education (ZIALE) examinations.
Petita, who has represented Zambia at a number of international model competitions, did her primary school at St Patrick’s and later went to Chunga Boarding School in Lusaka before going to Mumbwa for her secondary education.
Later, she attended Ellendmere School before pursuing her degree course at the University of Lusaka.
But as she was pursuing her law studies, she never abandoned the catwalk.
“And it came to pass. From runway model to lawyer! This is truly one of my best moments in my life. I dreamt of this for the longest time and God surely didn’t bring me this far to abandon me,” Petita posted on her Facebook page.
“The devil tried to convince me that I couldn’t do it but I serve a mighty living God. I have a story to tell and it begins now. To my beloved friends and family, I wouldn’t be here without you, this is for us. The sleepless nights, the prayers and the fights were all worth it. There is no word to describe how thankful I am to each one of you. I love you.
“To the people that looked down on me, the ones that thought I would never see this day, thank you because you also motivated me, I was determined to prove you wrong, to show you that God gives all of us an equal chance in life.”
Petita hopes that she has been able to inspire someone with her latest milestone in her academic life.
She has cited her mother as having the biggest impact in shaping who she is.
“My mother is a real woman of substance and I am a better person because of her. She would constantly remind me that envy leads you to your early grave, so with this instilled in me, I understood the importance of hard work regardless of how people tend to perceive me or the industry at large,” she says.
Petita follows in the footsteps of Miss Zambia 1997 Tukuza Tembo who has had a largely successful career as a legal practitioner after impressing on the catwalk.
Now that she has been admitted, her modelling career will certainly be tucked away.
It is something she has previously talked about.
“It’s not possible to mix entertainment and the legal profession, neither is it allowed. You just can’t be taken serious, that is why I have not been as active in my modelling work for a while now,” she previously said in an interview.
KELVIN KACHINGWE, Lusaka