Meghan Markle Receives Emotional Reception From Nigerian Community

"Prince Harry, you married the best—our daughter, our friend, Princess Meghan."

Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex and Meghan, Duchess of Sussex meet with the Chief of Defence Staff of Nigeria at the Defence Headquarters in Abuja on May 10, 2024 in Abuja, Nigeria.
(Image credit: Getty Images)

Meghan Markle was welcomed with open arms while visiting Nigeria alongside her husband, Prince Harry, in honor of the tenth anniversary of the Invictus Games.

On Saturday, May 11, the Duke and Duchess of Sussex attended a reception for military families and the widow association at the Defense Headquarters Officers Mess in Abuja, People reported.

Abike Dabiri Erewa—chairman of the Nigerian Diaspora Commission—welcomed Markle and her husband to the country, and while also pointing out the Duchess of Sussex's personal ties to Nigeria after she revealed she's 43% Nigerian in 2022.

"Princess Meghan is a Nigerian!" Erewa said, adding that she was "excited but not surprised" by the news Markle is Nigerian "because she is beautiful, intelligent, diligent and hardworking and she stands in the midst of challenges."

Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex, and Meghan, Duchess of Sussex visit Nigeria Unconquered, a charity organisation that works in collaboration with the Invictus Games Foundation, at a reception at Officers’ Mess on May 11, 2024 in Abuja, Nigeria.

Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex, and Meghan, Duchess of Sussex visit Nigeria Unconquered, a charity organization that works in collaboration with the Invictus Games Foundation, at a reception at Officers’ Mess on May 11, 2024 in Abuja, Nigeria.

(Image credit: Getty Images)

“Prince Harry, you married the best—our daughter, our friend, Princess Meghan,” she continued. “I hope you come back again, again and again.

“Princess Meghan, you married the best man," Erewa added, careful not to leave the Duke of Sussex out.

Markle was also gifted a traditional Nigerian skirt during the royal couple's visit to Abuja, which she wore on their final day in Nigeria along with a Carolina Herrera button-down shirt.

"I very quickly got the memo that I need to wear more color so I can fit in with all of you in your incredible fashion!" Markle said on May 11 during a panel conversation alongside media executive Mo Abudu and World Trade Organization director-general Dr. Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala. 

On Mother's Day, May 12, the Duchess of Sussex also received some heartfelt and public happy Mother's Day wishes while visiting the Ilupeju Senior Grammar School to watch the Giants of Africa basketball exhibition.

Meghan (L), Duchess of Sussex, and Britain's Prince Harry (R), Duke of Sussex arrive at the State Governor House in Lagos on May 12, 2024 as they visit Nigeria as part of celebrations of Invictus Games anniversary.

Meghan Markle and Prince Harry arrive at the State Governor House in Lagos on May 12, 2024 as they visit Nigeria as part of celebrations of Invictus Games anniversary.

(Image credit: Getty Images)

“I want to wish you a happy, happy Mother’s Day," Masai Ujiri—the vice-chairman and president of the charity as well as a former NBA player—said, as reported by People. “It is sometimes hard for us to be away from our kids and family to make things like this happen. But to do so shows dedication. To come to something like this and delicate yourself we truly appreciate it so thank you again.”

Markle and her husband Prince Harry share two children together—Prince Archie and Princess Lilibet.

On the couple's final day in Nigeria, Markle re-wore the same yellow Carolina Herrera silk gown she wore for Archie's first birthday—a sweet way to mark Mother's Day and, it turns out, another way for Markle to honor the country's fashion and the warm Nigerian welcome.

Danielle Campoamor is an award-winning freelance writer covering mental health, reproductive justice, abortion access, maternal mental health, politics, celebrity, and feminist issues. She has been published in The New York Times, Washington Post, CNN, NBC, Vogue, Harper's Bazaar, Marie Claire, InStyle, Playboy, Teen Vogue, Glamour, The Daily Beast, and more.