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Meet Idoma-born Alice Alache Akla Adepe, Miss Nigeria 1963

Written By Idoma Television on Thursday, January 5, 2017 | 6:28:00 AM

By Nats Onoja Agbo

ALSO READ: EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW! 54-year-old Alice Adepe, Miss Nigeria 1963 tells the shocking story of her life

If very little is known about Ms Alice Alache Akla Adepe, it is not surprising. She came ahead of her time. Against all odds, and because of her enchanting beauty and carriage, Ms Alice Alache Akla Adepe emerged as Miss Nigeria in 1963. 

Born to the family of Akla Adepe of the Oono family in Otukpo-Icho in the present Otukpo Local Government Area of Benue State in the 1940s, she created history by being the second lady from Northern Nigeria to win the coveted crown for which she was rewarded with a singer sewing machine and 200 pounds.

 When she returned to Otukpo after her victory, and made a historic trip through the streets of Otukpo on her scooter. She was cheered by hundreds of men and women who thronged the streets to welcome their heroine. When Ms Alice Alache Akla Adepe won the contest in 1963, she was addressed as Alice Abeebe, apparently because the organizers mistook Adepe for Abeebe. 

The franchise of the Miss Nigeria contest, which started as a photo contest in 1957, was owned by Daily Times of Nigeria. Each contestant posted a photograph of herself to the Daily Times headquarters in Lagos. Thereafter, finalists were shortlisted and invited to compete in the live final at the Lagos Island Club. Grace Oyelude, a Yoruba from Northern Nigeria won the first edition of Miss Nigeria in 1957. 

Helen Anyamaeluna, a Secretarial student from the Eastern Region won the 1958 edition, just as Nene Etule, a Cameroonian won the 1959 edition; constitutionally, Southern Cameroon was still part of Nigeria by 1959. 

Rosemary Anieze from Midwestern Region won the 1960 Miss Nigeria contest but is sometimes referred to as Miss Independence, in obvious reverence for Nigeria’s year of independence. Clara Emefiana and Yemi Idowu won the 1961 and 1962 editions. Forty-one years after Ms Alice Alache Akla Adepe won it, Ms Ene Lawani emerged victorious as Miss Nigeria in 2004.

Interestingly, her niece, Patience Ahubi Adepe was recently crowned the Most Beautiful Girl in Idomaland

1957 Grace Oyelude
1958 Helen Anyamaeluna
1959 Nene Etule
1960 Rosemary Anieze also known as “Miss Independence”
1961 Clara Emefiena
1962 Yemi Idowu
1964 Edna Park
1965 Anna Eboweime
1967 Rosaline Balogun
1968 Foluke Ogundipe
1970 Stella Owivri
1972 Victoria Bamidele
1977 Toyin Monney
1978 Irene Omagbemi
1979 Helen Prest
1980 Syster Jack
1981 Tokunbo Onanuga
1982 Rita Martins
1984 Cynthia Oronsaye
1985 Rosemary Okeke
1986 Rita Anuku
1987 Stella Okoye
1988 Wunmi Adebowale
1990 Binta Sukai
1991 Bibiana Ohio
1993 Janet Fateye
1994 Clara Ojo
1998 Regina Nwabunar
2000 Vien Tetsola also known as the “Millennium Queen”
2001 Amina Ekpo
2002 Sylvia Edem
2003 Nwando Okwosa
2010 Damilola Agbajor
2011 Feyijimi Sodipo
2013 Ezinne Akudo Anyaoha
2015 Leesi Peter-Vigboro

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