Sunday, August 05, 2007

More adoption murk: Was Madonna paying 'independent' assesor's expenses?

CNN, Reuters and the Malawi News are carrying reports that Malwian Minister of Women and Child Development Kate Kainja has barred Penstone Kilembe from flying to London to assess Madonna and Guy Ritchie's suitability to adopt David Banda. The Malawian paper suggests that Kilembe had accepted an airline ticket from Madonna:

"We have already contacted Madonna that someone else and not Kilembe will come to assess her, because we feel Mr Kilembe personalized the whole issue when other people can go," the Minister told the newspaper.

Kilembe dismissed suggestions that he personally asked Madonna for an air ticket.

The ministerial intervention - which seemed designed to try to avoid claims that the adoption process was being floated by Madonna's cash - could have knock-on effects:
Justin Dzonzi, a human rights lawyer who led a 65-member rights group challenge to Madonna's adoption, also said the minister's decision could halt the adoption process.

"The Minister cannot change what the court set by having another person to do the assessment, the court will not listen to anyone else apart from the one it appointed," he said.

Considering Madonna insisted there were no Malwian laws covering adoption, she seems to be falling foul of rather a lot of them all of a sudden.