Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Madonna to defend adoption on Oprah

Madonna is expected to publicly defend her intended adoption of a 13-month-old Malawian boy during an appearance on the Opera Winfrey show tomorrow.

The queen of pop will be recording the interview with the queen of daytime television today, the show's producers confirmed yesterday.

Her interview on the US chat show will mark the first time that Madonna has publicly appeared to defend her decision to raise David Banda, who was flown to Britain to live with the star last week after a Malawian judge granted her and husband Guy Ritchie temporary custody of the child.

In an open letter published last week, Madonna defended her plan to raise the African baby boy, insisting that she and husband Guy Ritchie had acted "according to the law like anyone else who adopts a child".

Hitting back at claims by human rights groups in Malawi that the couple's celebrity had allowed them to by-pass the country's usual adoption laws, Madonna described the allegations as "totally inaccurate".

But since then the boy's father has cast doubt on the intended adoption by claiming that he did not realise Madonna wanted to fully adopt his son.

"I was never told that adoption means that David will no longer be my son," Yohana Banda told the AP news agency at the weekend.

"If I was told this, I would not have allowed the adoption.

"I want more clarification on the adoption. I would prefer that David
goes back to the orphanage where I can see him any time I want, rather than send him away for good," added Mr Banda, who lives in the Malawian village of Lipunga.

His statement conflicted with remarks he made previously when he hit back at human rights groups in Malawi that have filed a legal challenge against Madonna's planned adoption of baby David.