TV personality Grace Msalame has sued Ugandan Ministry of Tourism for using her photos without consent to promote its 2019 Miss Curvy Competition aimed at attracting tourists.
Msalame, who is as curvy as they come, posted an official letter on social media saying she’s pressing charges against the ministry which used her photos for their viral campaign which lists women as a tourist attraction in the country.
“Miss Curvy Uganda’s deliberate and calculated use of my image and likeness to promote and encourage the violation of women’s bodies has defamed my character and reputation, damaged a brand I have worked for many years to establish and subjected me to unwarranted and underserved cyber bullying. I strongly and categorically reject a message that pits women of different sizes against each other. I am in no way associated with an activity that objectifies women in the name of promoting culture,” her statement reads.
There has been a public outcry following Uganda’s recent proposal by the ministry to add “curvy and sexy women” as Uganda’s attractions.
The pageant, set to take place in June, was unveiled in Kampala on Tuesday by the minister for Tourism, Godfrey Kiwanda, as part of tourism promotion.
“Uganda is endowed with beautiful women. Their beauty is unique and diverse. That’s why we decided to use the unique beauty, the curves… to make this beauty a product to be marketed along with what we already have as a country ranging from nature, the language and food, to make it a tourist attraction,” Kiwanda told AFP news agency on Thursday.
Several women have accused the campaign of objectifying them and want it scrapped. Msalame, who is gearing up for a TV comeback on NTV after more than five years of being away from the silver screen, stated she does not stand with the message.
“I take great exception to the fact that my image and likeness are being used to propagate, disseminate and encourage the objectification of women’s bodies. I do not endorse or agree with such a message,” she said in the statement.
It’s not the first time, however, Ugandans have claimed her.
In 2017, a Ugandan paper listed her among the top rated “Elusive Ugandan sex sirens” a thing that made her release a statement stating she’s purely Kenyan.
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