Normally, an adoptive parent has to live in Malawi for 18 months before being awarded a child for adoption there, assuming all else is in place.
The Nyasa Times reports from Blantyre that the Supreme Court of Appeal in Malawi handed down a ruling Friday which overturned a lower court decision preventing Madonna from adopting three-year-old Chifundo (“Mercy“) James from an orphanage in southern Malawi.
In April Judge Esmie Chombo said the pop star could not be granted custody because she was single and she had not lived in the country for the minimum period prescribed by inter-country adoption laws.
The little girl’s father, James Kambewa, who placed his daughter in an orphanage because he cannot afford to care for her, is devastated that Madonna is able to adopt his daughter and take her out of the country according to the Daily Mirror, a British newspaper.
Mercy’s dad, is quoted as saying, “I am devastated. I did not even know that the judges were making a ruling about Madonna adopting my child on that day…I feel betrayed by my countrymen who gave me a deaf ear because I am poor and Madonna is rich.”