Meghan Markle Sparkles On Nigeria Tour With Prince Harry

Published 12 days ago
The Duke and Duchess of Sussex Visit Nigeria – Day 2
ABUJA, NIGERIA - MAY 11: (EDITORIAL USE ONLY) Meghan, Duchess of Sussex speaks at a Women in Leadership event co-hosted with Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala on May 11, 2024 in Abuja, Nigeria. (Photo by Andrew Esiebo/Getty Images for The Archewell Foundation)

On the recent three-day visit to Nigeria with her husband Prince Harry, the Duchess of Sussex, Meghan Markle, impressed, also inadvertently bringing local fashion to the spotlight.

She had joined the Duke of Sussex to the West African country to promote Invictus Games, a multi-sport event empowering serving military members and veterans to overcome physical and mental challenges.

During an event for leading Nigerian women leaders in Abuja, moderated by media mogul Mo Abudu, Markle was on stage, alongside Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, the Director-General of the World Trade Organization (WTO), wearing a bright red dress from Oriré (meaning good luck in Yoruba), a bespoke women’s clothing brand, perhaps as a nod to her Nigerian heritage.

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Known as the Dire Dress, priced at ₦255,000 ($173), the strappy mid-length outfit quickly went viral on social media.

Perhaps struggling to keep up with the demand, the brand issued a statement on Instagram: “We are experiencing some downtime on the website due to unanticipated volume of traffic. Our team is working on getting it back up as soon as possible. Thank you for your patience.”

As of now, the online store is back up, with the Dire Dress available for pre-order only.

While on tour, the royal couple also visited the Lightway Academy in the Federal Capital Territory of Abuja, where they interacted with children and learned about the institution’s initiatives.

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At the Nigeria Unconquered charity in the same city, the Prince engaged in a game of sitting volleyball with army veterans, as Markle watched from the sidelines. He also spent time with wounded and injured Nigerian service members at the 44 Nigerian Army Reference Hospital in Kaduna, Northern Nigeria.

“It’s about looking at the bigger picture – promoting social causes and impacting lives,” Nigerian analyst Damilare Asiwaju shares with FORBES AFRICA. “Nigeria right now is going through one of the most difficult times in history and a little bit of social welfare engagement would do no harm.”

“Be it the organizing of the charity sporting event for veterans living with disabilities to try and give them a life back or the co-hosting of a women’s leadership event where the advocacy for gender equality was brought to the fore or the inspirational heartwarming discussions with young students, Nigeria didn’t just roll out a red carpet for the Duke and Duchess of Sussex just for public fanfare alone, we benefited from the benevolence of two ‘private individuals’ who have dedicated their lives to make the underprivileged ‘royalty’ too.”

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