Alice Alache Akla Adepe, Miss Nigeria 1963 (Photos)

By Nats Onoja Agbo

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 Scooter.

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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