My name is Anna Banner. I am 18 years old. I am the current Most Beautiful Girl in Nigeria. I hail from Bayelsa State. I am the first girl but last child of my parents.
I had my secondary education in Port Harcourt last year and in the last Unified Matriculation Examinations, I scored 214 and was waiting to write post-UME. I applied to read communications at University of Port Harcourt. I worked partly at an oil company in Port-Harcourt because I didn’t want to be idle.
Support from parents
I had the support of my parents. Initially, I did not tell them about the auditions. I thought that I would not make it to the final. It was only after I scaled through the audition process that I informed them and they were happy. There were even at the finals to cheer me on.
Winning the crown
This is my first attempt at a beauty pageant. I had always wanted to participate in a pageant but I never got encouragement until a friend advised me to buy the form. I went for auditions and saw so many beautiful girls. I felt intimidated and did not even expect to make it to the grand finale. I won due to God’s grace and not because I was the prettiest or had the loudest applause. It is not because I am from Bayelsa. My victory was purely on merit.
I remain my old self
I am still Anna Banner; it is just that I am wearing a crown. Adjusting to my new status has not been easy because a lot of things are new to me. For instance, I get more calls from well wishers, my Facebook page has been bombarded by requests but in all, I am grateful to God. Sometimes, I feel I have been robbed of my privacy but I know every queen before me experienced same and I am handling it all.
Being a queen is a selfless assignment and not a ticket to join the world of glamour. The crown has given me a platform to actualise my dreams which is helping humanity and the best part it I will be doing it on a larger scale. My area of focus will be HIV/AIDS.
As the first female black president in Africa, I admire Ellen Sirleaf-Johnson for her strength, courage and resilience. Apart from her, I also have God and my mother as role models that inspire me.
Dream for Bayelsa State
As a Special Adviser on Culture and Tourism to my state governor, I will use the MBGN platform to awaken people to the tourism potential in the state such that it will generate revenue and also create employment opportunities. By the end of my reign, I want Bayelsa to have become the Dubai of Nigeria.
The men have been there even before I went for the pageant, so it is not a new thing to me. I just try to stay focused on other things without getting distracted by the attention I receive from the opposite sex. I come from a family where my parents don’t spare the rod and are religious. I have always had a curfew time and prior to MBGN, I had to be home by 6pm, before then it was 5 pm.
Now it has been relaxed a bit because they realise that my designation sometimes demand that I am out a little bit later than my curfew. Except for that, since I became queen, my parents have refused to treat me differently. I still do house chores and I am sure they will still scold me if the need arises.
I like to look chic and glamorous. I don’t like wearing high-heel shoes but I don’t have a choice now. When shopping for shoes, I go for comfortable heels which I can wear for four or five hours without feeling stressed.
I drink a lot of water, get enough rest by sleeping and I never sleep with make-up on because my pores need to breath. I also eat plenty of fresh vegetables and fruits. Staying slim is not a struggle and I eat moderately. But I still visit the gym to keep fit not necessarily to lose weight. My statistics is 34-26-39 and I am 5 ft 7.