Madonna’s new daughter, Chifundo “Mercy” James, 3, has flown out of her native Malawi on a private jet headed for London. She should have arrived in London on Saturday morning. The little girl was reportedly accompanied on the flight by a nanny, a child nurse and a third aide.
Malawi’s highest court granted the adoption on June 12th, overturning an April lower court ruling that Madonna had not spent enough time in Malawi to be given a child.
The high court said the first judge had imposed too narrow a definition of residency, and praised Madonna for her work with children in a poor country where half a million have lost a parent to AIDS.
Madonna’s Raising Malawi, a charity founded in 2006, helps feed, educate and provide medical care for some of Malawi’s orphans.
Madonna, 50, adopted a son, David, from Malawi last year.
Madonna met Mercy in 2006 at Kondanani Children’s Village, an orphanage in Bvumbwe, just south of Blantyre. It was the same year she began the process of adopting David, whom she found at another orphanage in central Malawi.
The girl’s 18-year-old mother was unmarried and died soon after she gave birth. Since Madonna moved to adopt the girl, a dispute has arisen between the girl’s maternal relatives, who agreed to the adoption, and a man who says he is the father and wants to care for the girl himself, but acknowledged he had never seen Mercy.
Mercy will join big brothers David, 3, and Rocco, 8, and big sister Lourdes, 12.