Former Miss Universe Zozibini Tunzi is a force to be reckoned with, so it is only befitting that little girls are inspired by her – even during their time of leisure.
Sri Lankan celebrity doll artist Nigydolls created a doll in honour of Zozi, in which she is clad in her Xhosa-inspired dress that she looked stunning in during the 2021 Miss Universe ceremony when she handed over her crown. When a fan saw the doll and was excited about it, Mzansi Twitter reacted and the responses were not so great. For many, the doll does not look like Zozi, let alone does it look African to them. The doll’s facial features, especially its eyes, were a big ‘NO’ for many, with many saying they look Asian.
“But the eyes...say the doll was made in China,” one Tweep replied.
“The face is rather giving Jennifer Hudson playing mama Winnie Mandela,” another replied.
“Doesn’t look like her...no no no,” someone else wrote.
But others thought the doll cannot look exactly like Zozi because it is impossible.
“Can anyone provide any previous proof of dolls looking exactly like who they are intended to look like? Growing up with action figures, I’ve never seen a doll that looks like the person. What exactly are people expecting here? Picture perfect DNA duplicate of Zozi?”
Another huge debate was that of the name of the brand, Nigydolls. Twitter users questioned the name, wondering if it did not sound racist to the creators. For many, nigy sounded a lot like ‘n**ga’.
This is not the first Zozibini-inspired doll that has been created. Just a week after she was crowned Miss Universe in 2019, children’s author Fatima Abdullah created a black doll line inspired by Zozi.
She had told Daily Sun the doll was named Akiki, which meant ruby in Swahili.
“Akiki was inspired by wanting to consciously empower my daughter to grow up and embrace her African self. I’d been toying with the idea of a doll since my daughter was two,” she said.
“She is her natural self and she is an intelligent girl. I chose the name Akiki, because the stone is associated with nobility and confidence,” she added. - whatshotafrica.com/zalebs