Madonna will not be present for the final court ruling regarding her adoption of David Banda, her lawyer announced Tuesday.
The susperstar singer had planned to attend the Thursday hearing in Malawi, where the country’s High Court is expected to approve her two-year adoption bid, but “other engagements” will prevent her from doing so.
"We are going to court on Thursday but Madonna will not be there because she is not coming," Madonna’s lawyer Alan Chinula told Reuters. "The judge has indicated that he cannot object to her being absent when making the ruling."
The pop icon had requested a new court date – which would have been her third – but a court clerk said the judge could finalize the adoption without her presence.
David’s adoption has been notoriously controversial since the beginning when Madonna brought him home to London in 2006. Since non-residents are forbidden from adopting in Malawi, critics have accused the government of violating laws and giving the 49-year-old entertainer special treatment.
However, David’s father, Yohane Banda, has approved of Madonna’s adoption of his son.
“I have no problem with the government’s recommendation to allow Madonna to get the child,” he says. “This is what I wanted, that Madonna should keep the child.”