A South African mountaineer reached the top of Mount Everest on Thursday, becoming the first black African woman to conquer the world’s highest mountain.
Saray N’kusi Khumalo, a 47-year-old e-commerce executive, scaled the 8,850-metre (29,035-foot) mountain after three failed attempts that were foiled by bad weather and a deadly earthquake in 2015.
Nepal tourism department official, Mira Acharya, confirmed Khuwalo’s ascent, but did not say if she was the first black African woman to do so.
However, Mingma Sherpa of the Seven Summit Treks hiking agency, which provided local support to Khumalo said the record feat was one “hundred percent” true.
South Africa’s government in a Tweet congratulated Saray Khumalo for being the first Black African Woman to reach the top of the world by conquering Mount Everest.
Khumalo, who has conquered five mountains, including Mount Kilimanjaro in Tanzania, Aconcagua in Argentina and Mount Elbrus in Russia, uses her expeditions to raise funds for children’s education and libraries in Africa.
Everest, which straddles the Nepal-China border, has been climbed by nearly 5,000 people since it was first scaled by New Zealander Sir Edmund Hillary and Tenzing Norgay Sherpa in 1953.