Madonna gets Mercy
Madonna has won her appeal to adopt Malawian girl Mercy in a ruling made by the Malawi Supreme Court of Appeal today (12.06.09)
Madonna has won her appeal to adopt a Malawian girl.
The 50-year-old singer - who was barred from taking home four-year-old Chifundo 'Mercy' James in April as she had not been a resident in the country for the 18 months required - was told she would be able to give the girl a new home during a 90-minute hearing held at Malawi's Supreme Court of Appeal today (12.06.09).
The southern African state's chief justice Lovemore Munlo said: "In our view, Chifundo James would be better taken care of if she was adopted by foreign parents who will give her love and affection. We therefore grant the adoption."
Madonna is very "excited" with the news.
The pop superstar's lawyer Alan Chinula said: "It's the wee hours of morning in New York but she is excited at the news. As her lawyer I am happy this has settled this contentious issue."
He added he is currently organising Madonna's travel plans for Mercy, and is in the process of getting the tot a passport.
In making his decision the judge took into account Madonna's commitment to giving Malawian orphans an improved standard of life.
The judge also commented on the singer's financial stability - she earned a staggering $110 million last year - made her a good candidate to adopt.
Madonna has already adopted three-year-old David Banda from the country, and set up the Raising Malawi foundation which aims to give orphans food, education and medical care.
In April, Judge Esmie Chondo ruled Madonna could not adopt Mercy due to the residential laws - which were not insisted upon when she took home David in 2006.
However, the appeals court insists the original ruling had been made using an outdated reading of the requirement.
Mercy's 18-year-old mother died soon after giving birth, and the child had been raised in an orphanage ever since.
However, a man claiming to be the toddler's father is opposed to the adoption.
Last month, James Kambewa, 24, said: "I want to take care of her and I'm capable of taking care of my baby. Mercy, she is a Malawian, so I need her to grow as a Malawian, with our culture."