Mr Gay World has opened up voting for the public to select its favourite among the 22 representatives taking part in next month’s contest in Malta.
Included in the participants is Oelof de Meyer, a 28-year-old renewable energy engineer from Joburg, who is representing South Africa.
He was recently chosen as a last minute “bridging” delegate for the international competition after Mr Gay South Africa failed to hold a pageant in the past year.
Mr Gay South Africa, as a result, lost its Mr Gay World license, which has now been transferred to the Pink Loerie Festival’s Mr Mardi Gras South Africa (MRMGSA) pageant.
In a newly released promo video, de Meyer, who is doing his PHD in solar energy, said his passion in life “is to look after our environment”.
He has been working to raise funds for breast cancer awareness, and noted that LGBT women are especially vulnerable to the disease. “Often they are also not granted the same treatment from health providers,” he explained.
De Meyer added that, “we should celebrate our differences and protect vulnerable minorities” and said he hopes to use Mr Gay World as a platform to “advance the interests of the LGBT community on a global scale”.
South Africa has won Mr Gay World twice; in 2010 (Charl van den Berg) and 2011 (Francois Nel). Mr Gay World 2016 takes places from 19 to 23 April in Malta. To vote for de Meyer, click here. Watch his video below.