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 Madonna urged to 'think-again'

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Dawnie
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PostSubject: Madonna urged to 'think-again'   Sat Mar 28, 2009 6:21 am

Madonna is facing growing opposition to her plan to adopt another child from Malawi.

Children's
charity Save the Children has urged the singer to think again, while
there are reports the family of the toddler she is seeking to remove
from the African republic is fighting the adoption.

Four-year-old Mercy James will be a sister for Madonna's three children, including David Banda who came from the same orphanage.

David's adoption aroused controversy when he was taken to Madonna's London home in 2006.

Court
clerks confirmed the name of the child and said that Madonna or her
associates are expected to appear in court next Monday for the adoption
proceedings.

Madonna is expected to arrive in Malawi over the weekend, officials have said.

However,
Mercy's grandmother, Lucy Chekechiwa, has hit out at the Material Girl
star, saying: "Why doesn't this singer pick other children? It is
stealing. I want to go to court, I won't let her go."

Mercy
has been living in a Malawi orphanage and Mrs Chekechiwa claimed it had
been agreed the child would go to her when she reaches the age of six.

According to The Sun newspaper, Mercy's 18-year-old mother died five days after her birth.

Meanwhile,
Save the Children said orphans should be cared for by extended family
in their home country and suggested international adoption can make
matters worse.

Spokesman Dominic Nutt said: "The best place for a child is in his or her family in their home community.

"Most
children in orphanages have one parent still living, or have an
extended family that can care for them in the absence of their parents."

According
to Save the Children, international adoption should only be considered
if the child is a genuine orphan, and if all other alternatives in
their own country have been genuinely exhausted.

"International
adoption can actually exacerbate the problem it hopes to solve," said
Mr Nutt. "The very existence of orphanages encourages poor parents to
abandon children in the hope that they will have a better life."

He
said: "We urge any celebrity to set an example, to follow
internationally agreed procedures designed to protect the child, and to
ensure that the child in question has no other options in their home
community."

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