Madonna's Malawian return
13:30 27 October 2006
Madonna has agreed to take her adopted son back to Malawi for regular visits.
The 48-year-old singer - who has been granted temporary foster care of 13-month-old David Banda with a view to adopt him - has promised to take him back to his homeland every four years.
David's father Yohane Banda told UK news channel ITV yesterday (26.10.06): "We made an agreement in court for David to lead a better life, I was happy with that.
"Every three or four years they will bring him to visit. I'm delighted he's been welcomed into that family."
David's father also urged Madonna not to be put off by the controversy surrounding the adoption or the red tape involved in legalising her guardianship.
Yohane said: "My message to Madonna is that she should not be discouraged, be strong. As we agreed and we expect that after three to four years the child shall come back for us to see him."
A Malawian court is expected to rule in the next few days on appeals by 67 human rights groups who claim the adoption is illegal.
Desmond Kaunda, director of the Malawi Human Rights Resource Centre, said: "We are not against the adoption because it is a right. But our main concern is to what extent was Madonna resident in Malawi to actually qualify for that kind of an order?"
But Madonna - who appeared on 'The Oprah Winfrey Show' on Wednesday (25.10.06) to defend her actions - has insisted there were no adoption laws in the African country.
The singer told Oprah: "There are no adoption laws in Malawi and I was warned by my social worker that we were more or less going to have to make them up as we went along. And she did say to me, 'Pick Ethiopia. Go to Kenya. Don't go to Malawi because you're just going to get a hard time'."
Madonna assured the chat show host that she had not used her fame and wealth to "buy" baby David.
She said: "I assure you it doesn't matter who you are or how much money you have, nothing goes fast in Africa."
(C) BANG Media International