Inside the glitzy royal wedding of Nigeria's Yusuf Buhari and Zahra Nasir Bayero

The son of the country's president married the emir of Bichi's daughter at a glamorous ceremony

Yusuf Buhari and Zahra Nasir Bayero met at university in the UK. Aisha Muhammadu Buhari / Instagram
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The marriage of Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari's son to the daughter of the emir of Bichi, Nasiru Ado Bayero, has been called Nigeria's celebrity event of the year.

Thousands attended the ceremony, held at the palace in Bichi on Friday, as Yusuf Buhari tied the knot with Zahra Nasir Bayero, the BBC reports. Private jets filled the runway of the airport in the northern Nigerian city of Kano as members of Nigeria's elite and West African dignitaries flew in for the wedding.

There was also heavy security, with police and military officers guarding the palace and stationed at nearby locations, the BBC said.

Bichi is one of the emirates in Kano state.

The couple met at the University of Surrey in the UK, according to Nigerian online newspaper Premium Times.

Yusuf, 27, is the only son of the president, while Zahra, 19, is the emir's second daughter. Emir Bayero's brother is the emir of Kano, one of Nigeria's most prominent Islamic leaders.

Last week, pre-wedding photos released by the couple trended online in the country and generated controversy after some called the bride Zahra's dress "immoral", because her shoulders were exposed. Many, however, defended her.

President Buhari, who attended the wedding on Friday, had earlier put together a 145-member committee for the celebrations, according to local media. The president was seen waving to crowds of supporters as he arrived in Bichi.

Despite the glamour and A-list attendees, festivities were scaled down because of the coronavirus pandemic, with many of the guests wearing face masks, according to the BBC. The wedding was conducted by Communications Minister Isa Ali Pantami, also a qualified imam.

Top politicians who attended included Buhari's predecessor, Goodluck Jonathan, whom he defeated in the 2015 election. The Gambia's first lady, Fatoumata Bah Barrow and the former president of neighbouring Niger, Mahamadou Issoufu, were also guests.

President Buhari greets supporters in Bichi. Femi Adesina / Facebook

Festivities continued the next day on Saturday, when the bride's father, Nasir Ado Bayero, was officially crowned as the emir of Bichi.

On Saturday, Nigeria's first lady Aisha Buhari shared some photos of the couple.

"All is set to welcome and receive our new daughter into the family," she posted on Instagram, along with pictures of herself with other guests.

Updated: August 22, 2021, 7:55 AM