The Prince of Wales and his wife on Wednesday started their tour of West Africa in the Gambia, which was re-admitted into the Commonwealth of Nations in February this year.

Prince Charles and Camilla, the Duchess of Cornwall are scheduled to visit Commonwealth countries in the region including Nigeria and Ghana over a period of nine days.

The tour follows the decision in April, by Commonwealth countries to have Prince Charles succeed Queen Elizabeth as head of the organization.

Prince Charles, who arrived the Gambia on Wednesday evening is expected to visit the Medical Research Council and conduct a tour of the Gambian Armed Forces Training Centre.

The Duchess of Cornwall, on the other hand will visit a school where she will meet young students who are preparing to enter The Queen’s Commonwealth Essay Competition.

During the tour, the royal couple is also expected to take part in commemorative events honouring the sacrifice made by Gambian, Ghanaian and Nigerian soldiers in the two World Wars.

 The Commonwealth evolved out of the British Empire in the mid-20th century and the Queen has been its head since her reign began in 1952. Prince Charles had long been expected to take on the role even though it is not strictly hereditary.

While Charles has previously visited Ghana and Nigeria, this is the first time the royal couple would be visiting the Gambia.