Prince Harry and Meghan Markle's recent trip to Nigeria has sparked speculation that the couple is sending a message to King Charles, indicating they don't need his permission to be working royals and want to do it on their own terms, according to royal author Tom Quinn.

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex, who stepped down as senior royals more than four years ago, visited the African country at the invitation of Nigeria's highest-ranking military official, Christopher Musa, but the British High Commissioner to Nigeria, Richard Montgomery, stressed the Sussexes were not visiting Nigeria on official business.

Despite the clarification that the trip was not a royal tour, Quinn tells The Mirror that the visit seemed to be "a bold statement that they refuse to accept they are no longer working royals." The expert claims that the trip left King Charles and Prince William "scratching their heads" and thinking of ways to "control this nightmare situation."

"When you look at what Harry and Meghan got up to on their Nigeria visit it is easy to see why the senior royals are worried. Everything you might expect from an official royal visit was there - the receptions, the visits to schools and charities, to wounded soldiers and the disabled," Quinn noted.

"Meghan and Harry's speeches and their whole attitude has been designed to give the impression that they are still fully paid-up royals and William and his father King Charles don't like it one bit. For Charles and William, it's as if Meghan and Harry are saying, 'We don't need your permission to be working royals - we will do it on our own terms whenever and wherever we like,'" Quinn Continued.


Former BBC royal correspondent Jennie Bond also weighed in on the matter, suggesting that King Charles and Prince William would want to set the record straight regarding the Sussexes' status as non-working royals. Meanwhile, royal historian and author Tessa Dunlop observed that Prince Harry was "very much sticking to a royal script" during the Nigeria visit, despite no longer being a working royal.

"While the Prince can no longer claim to be a working royal, he is very much sticking to a royal script. Fast on the heels of his service-themed London visit, came a quasi-royal three-day African tour," Dunlop explained. "Invited to Nigeria (a Commonwealth country no less) 'as part of the Invictus Community', there Harry joined forces with Meghan, who claims 47 percent Nigerian heritage."

However, Dunlop also noted that "any hope that Harry and Meghan might be enticed back into an informal Commonwealth role, looks more unlikely than ever," given the nature of their recent service-focused trips.

The Sussexes' representatives did not comment on the story, while Buckingham Palace and Kensington Palace have been contacted by The Mirror for comment.

The couple's Nigeria trip, which included visits to a school for an event on mental health, meetings with charity organizations and wounded Nigerian soldiers, and a welcome from local politicians, has raised concerns among senior royals about the implications of their activities on the monarchy.