The beauty queens who are completing for the Miss South Africa 2017 title have received R25 000 prize money ahead of the pageant next month.

The 12 contestants will compete for the prestigious crown at the Sun City Superbowl on March 26.

The beauty pageant will be broadcast live and simulcast on M-Net and Mzansi Magic.

Miss South Africa 2017 will receive R1-million in cash from sponsors Sun International and Cell C as well as a bouquet of prizes that will elevate the competition to one of the richest pageants in the world.

It is also the first time that the finalists have received a cash prize.

“I am so grateful for this gesture from our sponsors. For me it is a blessing and will enable me to further improve my life and impact on the world around me. I plan to use this money as part of capital investment for a start-up business that I would like to launch towards the end of the year.” said Boipelo Mabe from Alexandra, Gauteng.

Kayla Malherbe from Mtunzini, Kwa Zulu Natal said: “I am thrilled! I'd like to thank all the sponsors for the prize money we as Top 12 received. I'll be putting this money into an investment account to save up for studying and for a car.”

This year’s judges include Maps Maponyane, Bridget Masinga and Ezra Davids, with more celebrity judges to be announced shortly.

For the first time in the history of the pageant, members of the public can vote.

You can vote by sending an SMS with the number of their favourite finalist to 45791.