Madonna adopts twin girls from Malawi

Madonna has adopted twin girls from Malawi, according to government officials.

The singer, who had previously denied she was visiting the country with a view to adopting more children, was given permission by the Malawian high court on Tuesday to adopt the four-year-olds Stella and Esther.

Mlenga Mvula, a judicial spokesman, said: “I can confirm that Madonna has been granted an adoption order for two children.”

Madonna has previously adopted two children from Malawi, David Banda in 2006 and Mercy James in 2009.

The twins are being adopted from the Home of Hope orphanage in Mchinji, near the western border with Zambia, where David Banda once lived.

But many in Malawi have accused the government of giving the singer a special exception to laws that prevent non-residents from adopting children to take abroad.

With Madonna and the girls’ birth father present in the courtroom in Lilongwe, a judge ruled in her favour. But the adoption is conditional on Madonna proving she will provide a suitable home.

Dominic Misomale, a government-appointed guardian, will travel with Madonna, Stella and Esther to the US and observe how she looks after them, before reporting back to the government.

Titus Mvalo, a lawyer for Madonna in Malawi, told Reuters: “Madonna has demonstrated over the years that she has passion for Malawi and her children, and therefore the court was satisfied and could not stop the adoption of the twins.”

The singer dismissed reports in January that she intended to adopt more children from Malawi as “untrue rumours” and said she was visiting the country as part of her work for NGO Raising Malawi.

Esther and Stella will join David Banda and Mercy James, Rocco, from her marriage to Guy Ritchie, and Lourdes, from a previous relationship.

Madonna’s relationship with Malawi has not always been smooth. The former Malawian president Joyce Banda accused her of demanding unending gratitude for her adoptions, but her successor Peter Mutharika said in 2014: “My government has always been grateful for the passion Madonna has for this country.”

A representative for Madonna did not provide a comment.

Source: https://www.theguardian.com/music/2017/feb/07/madonna-adopts-twin-girls-from-malawi-stella-esther

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