Madonna accused of ‘betraying’ adopted daughter’s family: ‘We did not donate daughter Mercy’

US pop diva Madonna left Malawi after a visit that included meetings with President Peter Mutharika and the biological father of one of her adopted children but has received bad headlines for ‘betraying’ the family of her adopted daughter Mercy – as they issued a desperate plea to be allowed to see her.

Laughs; Madonna could be seen joking with her young daughter Mercy James

Laughs; Madonna could be seen joking with her young daughter Mercy James

Regrets Saxon Maunde, Mercy James' grandfather, said he bitterly regrets agreeing to allow Madonna to adopt his granddaughter

Regrets Saxon Maunde, Mercy James’ grandfather, said he bitterly regrets agreeing to allow Madonna to adopt his granddaughter

A local newspaper, Daily Times and UK’s Daily Mail reported that the grandparents of Mercy James have accused Madonna  of cutting them out of her life and failing to meet a promise to keep her close to her roots. They also attacked ‘white foreigners’ for taking children away from Africa.

In a story posted on MailOnline by Malawian journalist Peter Jengwa, it reports that Saxon Maunde, grandfather of Mercy James who was adopted by Madonna in 2009, that he was not aware Mercy has visited the country.

“She has my blood flowing in her veins. It is preposterous that I am not made aware of anything regarding her development,” Maunde is quoted as saying.

The 69-year-old, who ekes out a living selling pots from a roadside stall, blasted Madonna , named by President Mutharika as Malawi’s Goodwill Ambassador on child welfare, saying “she has shown no humanity at all towards us.”

Maunde originally backed Madonna’s bid to adopt his granddaughter because he believed she would get a good education, and convinced his reluctant ex-wife to agree the adoption papers.

But  Maunde said he bitterly regrets his decision and accused Madonna of kidnapping a child of Africa.

He said: “White foreigners who decide to take our children away from Africa have no understanding of our culture. They don’t realise that in our African families each one has a responsibility to the others. If a half-brother or half-sister does well, they share their fortunes with all of the others.

“A child like my granddaughter Mercy, if she succeeds in her career, she is expected to share that success with all of us. That is how our extended family system works.”

Maunde’s ex-wife Lucy Chekechiwa, also 69, who fears she may never see her granddaughter again.

“I  am now old and sickly,” she said. “I don’t want to die before seeing my daughter.”

Maunde says he now bitterly regrets signing the papers that allowed the 56-year-old pop star to adopt Mercy, whose teenage mother Mwandida, died days after giving birth.

“We did not donate our child to Madonna. We let Madonna have our child because we were told she is a philanthropist who would help give her a good education.

“What is the point of us wanting Mercy to get a good education and a good life if in the end she does not help her relatives?”

In the Daily Times newspaper in Malawi, Peter Baneti who was party to Mercy’s adoption papers, said they agreed that Madonna would be bringing the daughter to parents.

“However, since 2009 , every time Madonna comes we never succeed to see Maercy,” Daily Times quoted Baneti.

On this visit, Madonna met Yohane Banda, father of her adopted son, 9-year-old David Banda and had a ground breaking  ceremony  for a new 50-bed pediatrics ward in the commercial capital, Blantyre, that she will help fund.

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73 thoughts on “Madonna accused of ‘betraying’ adopted daughter’s family: ‘We did not donate daughter Mercy’”

  1. ibrahim makwati says:

    makolo amarcy ndi david muziwe kuti anawa sanayambe kupanga ndalama adakaliana moti panopa akufuna chithandizo chamakolo mwazifukwa zomwe mukunena palibendichimozichomwe chimene chingawathandize ana dikilani ana aphumzile MERCY AND DAVID there are still young jast wait for amoment time there will come back home this point intime let MERCY finish school then after start torlking what ever you want to say

  2. Saini says:

    What is adoption and what is foster care , the grandmother should understand these term before talking .Government should tell her what is adoption( a permenat termination of biology rights )

  3. chiba says:

    why would madonna allow david to see his father but she didnt allow mercy to see her grandparents,that woman is arrogant she doesnt give a shit about how other people feels.

  4. wapano says:

    ngakhale abwere nawo kwa inu, mungawadywtse chiani? All of us know kuti anawa kwao ndi kuno, even madona knows that. So there is no point trying to make claims that will end up killing the two children. Inu mwakalamba, the best you can do is to talk to relavant athaurities about your concern. Kuyankhula ndi atolankhani will only annoy madona and if the adoptions are cancelled, ana amenewa simungakhanitse kulera inu, trust me.

  5. we are international recognized. lets learn to appriaiate thank where due. what maunde should know is madonna lives an english life,to her there was wrong. look at the procedure tygrin find himself dancing with the queen, time will come when she will come for your special trip. may be you want to go and see 4 yourself where your daughter are sleeping.?

  6. taqwa says:

    umafuna mwana aphuzire kaye ufiti azikamnyamula madona mulichelo? msiye mwana aphuzile kaye uzasangalala uli ndi zaka 90 bola usagwe msanga mndege ya ufiti

  7. sayimoni bayisikolo says:

    Agogo akufuna chizukulu chibwere chizakwereko kabaza basi wayima pafupi pa khola kaya pa msika.Mercy aziponyako tima dollars patali patali timene amadyera kusukulu.Ku Malawi we believe in extended relations.Waliratu gogo pamepa.mwana akusemphana ndi culture ya chimalawi.

  8. Omasulira maKomenti says:

    Saxon Maunde regrets allowing Madona to adopt Mercy. Yet Mercy was in some poor orphanage at the time. What nonsense is this Bwana Maunde?

  9. Wake says:

    Kupusa a Malawi amenewa. The adopting parents have full rights over the adopted child thus no need to bother them about roots and origins.

  10. INEYO says:

    Study the adoption laws and criticize where appropriate

  11. Master says:

    Its 50 50. Madona is right jst as the parents were! (food for thot).

  12. aheli moto says:

    agogo a mercy muziyamika inu tawonani mwana kusangalala kwakeko. popeza everything is being written down, Iam sure mercy ndi david will one day come back to MALAwi astheir roots. anawo tu pano azolowera moyo wapa mwamba zedi . kungoyerekeza kubwera anawo kudzakhala atha kudzanyentchera ndikufa kumene. spare the lives of little angels

  13. Grace says:

    Madonna don’t bring them again to Malawi Malawians wake up how could you wait someone’s sweat that is stupid poor mentally . Work hard yourself and enjoy your sweat ufiti basi if I wake it’s my money to enjoy not to share travel see how people lead their life style

  14. Kupusa amalawi.akukupusisa anthu oti ali nchuma kale kumalawi kuno, akufuna akamuxia wanuo akatenge wao wake up u

  15. Herald Pitala Mathanyula says:

    @ 31 and 32 you are as good as Maunde. If you don’t know what the word ‘adoption’ means shut your foul stinking mouth. Who told u that if you adopt a child you need also to take care of the welfare of her/his relatives? That’s why there are many able Malawians who could adopt but its people like you that Malawians don’t want to adopt kids because sooner or later mukawona mwana wayamba kuoneka bwino, you will swarm back like bees demanding to have the child. As for you Maunde, ngati umatha kuwerenga listen: Ukufuna Mercy adziwe chikhalidwe chakwanu choti m’modzi akapeza ndiye kuti chuma nchogawana? Ufiti chani? Ndinu mukumalodza azibale anu inu akalemera, inuyo simufuna kugwira ntchito kuti mupange zanu kudikilira kuti uje akuchita bwino ndiye chuma chake its for all of us. What Mercy will become, its for herself and her kids, shupiti Maunde. Pangani zanu. U abandoned the kid at orphanage looking very sick, how could she have become rich in such conditions? Madonna don’t bring her again.

  16. Mfwethu says:

    Ana akamaphunzira makolo tisamayembekezere kuti azatithandiza patsogolo, its our responsibility to look after the fruits of our loins. Whether they decide to help us or not shouldn’t be a reason to bring up this extended family rubbish, it is in fact the one reason why most families in malawi are failing to progress. Pakhomo pamangozaza anthu atidye nawo who don’t care at all how their relatives work hard to find money and yet iwo they just fink its their right to partake of his/her labour…ayi Madonna owes nothing to this family, let Mercy decide on her own akadzakula whether to come and help her siblings that were left behind…osati iwo aziganiza kuti Madonna should be a getway to a super life for them!!
    Ignorance in most Malawians and envy are the real problems here.

  17. nanyoko muhiye says:

    nkulu opusa kwambiri bwanji sumamulera wekha. IDIOT.

  18. George Lihoma says:

    Mabungwe ambiri ndi maCSO akusokoneza anthu akumudzi pongofuna kukwanilitsa dyera lawo lofuna ndalama zophweka.
    Leave the kid to be afforded decent schooling, thus a much more BRIGHTER future for her and the extended families you are talking about.
    Mwana kuthandiza makolo ndimtima wake baasi komanso ngati sakufuna sitchimo.
    Inu sibwenzi ameneyo ali STD wani,pa week kujomba katatu coz mai ake anamwalira nde akagulitse kaye KALONGONDA…Stupid man.

  19. Taelos says:

    Viva madona,if this stupit grany wishes his daught,give him and adopt mine! Mis guided reporters,we love you madona continue we have prenty orphans

  20. Big brain says:

    Mainde kupusa kuda why did I leave the kid at the orphanage poverty or not

    Idiot and gold digger u probably showed lust for money why did madonna visited david’side,

  21. janice kachingwe says:

    bamboo Uyu,
    Mwana munakamudyetsanji kodi inu? Mumamupeleka kwa Madonna ngati geni? Mulekeni aphunzire ameneyu, madzi saiwala khwawa. You regret chaninso….kodi kumapoto mukugulitsawo kukutulako zochuluka choncho mpakana munakayeng`anira bwino mercy`yo. mulekeni akule alongosoke. Kuchikhala kuno ameneyo atamuphunzitsa ufiti, olo kumusiyitsa sukulu akwatiwe, olo mwinanso atafa kale ndi cholera or edzi

    dekhani wawa. am sure if you look around your village you will find some relations of mercy`s age okuti mungamugawireko cash yamapotoyo.

  22. Achiperigo says:

    This is the work of some misguided reporters and possibly stupid CSO members who stupidly influencing this useless grannies to think the way they are doing. Pepani agogo please continue the tinsmithing venture that you are into otherwise don’t make noise to people of this country about Mercy. You could not have blocked Mercy’s fate anyway and this had to happen. Come on Madonna we are proud of you and we agree with the President for choosing you to our Ambassador and please we wish you success in all the projects that you have lined up for this country. Shame be upon the Mtila sisters for depriving this country of the support that it will get from Madonna due to their selfish reasons.

  23. MADUKA says:




  24. Umbuli kuchuluka ku Malawi. The government needs to invest highly in education otherwise this country will never develop especially with idiots like Maunde. People need civic education on matters concerning social and economic issues.

  25. Peter Mathanyula Wakuba says:

    LMFAO. He bitterly regrets my ass! Did he want to sell her to mtchona ina ya pa mudzi?

  26. Peter Mathanyula Wakuba says:

    Hahahaha. Stupid old man. So you wanted to benefit riches from the adoption? Hhahahaha. Please don’t embarrass our people. People like you are the reason most malawians avoid going to the village.

  27. Leo says:

    Hey Mr. Grand parent. During the adoption process I hope you were told all these. You are useless and nonsense. You had the right to deny. Once you allowed the adoption process to take place you detached yourself from the child. Stop that nonsense otherwise you deserve displinary action

  28. sebe says:

    you #10 are fucked up, why in hell do you expect toddler to support lazy lomwes financially. by paying them a visit what wil they get. angulu ufiti basi thats why ambiri ntchito ndi using’anga, mbuzi

  29. Chelume says:

    Anakumverani kuti ndinu afiti mumuloza. Muzamuona msogolo

  30. phyllis says:

    that old mother-f********** is just out for money! Malawians are going to have a really bad reputation as people who bite the hands that feeds them!! do u think anyone in their right mind will ever want to assist Malawi!! NEVER!! Shameless, stupid and sub-human!!

  31. chinkombaleza gumanyundogowa says:

    A Maunde chimene mukanachita ndikudandaula mwaulemu osati mmene mukuneneramu uku ndikuipa mtima siuphunzitsa mwana kuti udzamudyere koma adzakhale pabwino mwayekha ndikumadzathandiza ena. Nanu olemba simumandisangalatsa zolemba zanu.

  32. ??? says:

    And she wants to construct 300 school blocks yet she is failing to construct a small thing for Mercy’s relatives.
    Satanic woman

  33. ??? says:

    And she wants to construct 300 school blocks yet she is failing to construct a small thing for Mercy’s relatives.
    Satanic girl

  34. Achimwene kusaphunzira says:

    Ana ambiri alephera kupita patsogolo ndi thandizo la maphunziiro chifukwa cha kaganizidwe koperewera ngatiaka

  35. faith says:

    so embarassing thats why a malawi tizitsalira kudalirana too much…. do we educate children kuti azasenze chiphyinjo cha mavuto athu??

  36. Maunde says:

    Mayoooooooooooooooo ,wana ndinaluza ine.

  37. iyawm says:

    chitsilu cha munthu iw maunde usatichimwitse kagwele kumanda munthu wadyela ndi ozikonda….stupid once more!!!!

  38. moto mwikho says:

    I think this article should not have been written. These are private contractual issues and not national issues.

  39. wawaruh says:


  40. Nankungwi says:

    Poti wayamba kukula ndiye mukuti ndi wanu. Madonna adaktola manwa ku orhphanage! chokano apa mungofuna kudya nawo basi! Mwayamba kuona kamwana kayamba kuseklela! a Malwi mabozda kagwereni uko well done Madonna give that child a future1

    KUKAMTI KUMAL MALawi timathandizana, where were you with your help when this poor kid was dumped in an orphanage?

    Shame on you if I were you i would just keep quiet

  41. collins says:

    Firstly,sorry Mr maunde for calling u stupid ,useless and selfish. In ur complaint,u say “if one does well helps the rest” r u telling us u want help?

  42. Bokhobokho says:

    Let this child learn, who knows she may be our next president.

  43. Biso na Biso says:

    Anthu a ku Mwera kwa Nyasaland dyera bwanji? A Maunde mumasayina mapepala a adoption kuganiza kuti Madonna akabwera azidzakupatsani ndalama? Mukuganiza kuti Mercy walemera? Kuba anthu a ku Mwera. Ndichifukwa chake munabera ma voti lero dziko lakulakani kuyendetsa. Alesi, mbava komanso mtundu omvetsa chisoni.

  44. Salabada says:

    Mkuluyu umphawi wamuswa ndi fumbi lakwawo kwa Mayaka

  45. JoePhiri says:

    The reporter is supposed to be schooled on the meaning of adoption. There is so many things to report rather than tracking unconcerned grand parents. Why did she meet David’s father not them….

  46. Oscar says:

    What Madonna did is Good. Malawi muno munachuluka kudzikonda ndi ma jealousy kwambiri. Amakanika anthu Ku choka Ku town mu Blantyre umu kukaona makalo kumudzu. Munthu akachita. bwino anthakati amachuluka achibale amene. inu veveve muti chan manyi eti. musiyeni mwanayo achite bwino. musamuzimise iyayi.

  47. mchona says:

    Timesbookshop comment number 1u r wrong, when parents or guardians agree to the adoption of their child it means they have failed to look after the child and want somone who can take that responsibility of looking after the baby, by the way Madonna did not adopt the child from the parents but from an Orphanage! The law is very clear once u adopt a child u look after that child until adulthood. Once the child grows it will be up to the child to choose her destiny whether to stay with the foster parents or go back to her own biological parents, the most painful question is to know why the parents/guardians put the child on adoption? Were there no uncles, nieces, cousins etc to look after her? The problem with Malawians is that we talk too much and yet we have hearts of stone to adopt a child not even our own biological children we have fathered from outside wedlock or teen pregnancies we refuse mwana wa pa chile! If u say the parents or guardians should be allowed to visit the child then that’s not adoption! I rest my case and may God bless those Malawians who genuinely look after orphaned children!

    1. phyllis says:

      very true!! This girl would have been dead without Madonna and this monkey wants to take advantage of her!! Adoption means that the child is yours-the child’s roots are irrelevant! why did they leave her in an orphanage in the first place- because they failed to take care of her!! mxiii!! sometimes even Jesus gets tired of us Mlawians!!

  48. madzo says:

    A Maunde angofuna azikamutuma kugulitsa mandasi kunsika, khalani chete ngati mukunfunira zabwino mzulu wanuyo.

  49. Counsellor says:

    I think Madonna has gone overboard to bring these children to Malawi and let them meet some of their parentage. Mwinanso a newspaper musamalembe nkhanizi. Anawa akukula bwino but they will be metally disturbed when everytime they read such stories in the paper. Its not fun to be read all over the world, that you are a poor adopted kid from the poorest of the poor in Africa, who were dumped at some orphanage because no kinsfolk could look after you. Then the same kinsfolk put such crazy demands on your adoptive parent. Anawa ngati anaomba jackpot, Mulungu alipo kumwamba, if they want to come back and look for their non-existent kinsfolk, then let it be their wish, not that of the kinsfolk.

    Madonna, I danced to your music long time ago, you may not believe in God anymore, but you believe in humanity. And when Jesus does ask you on your final day, that I was an orphan and you saved and looked after me. You will know that its not just those who say Amen, Amen that will see the Glory of God.

    1. Peter Mathanyula Wakuba says:

      I love this comment

  50. madzo says:

    You people are making noise now because someone adopted her and is takng good care of her, no one knew her until angel madona came to her rescue. You are talking much as if you care about her, would you please leave madona alone she did not steal Mercy but went through adoption process in which you could have refused her before finalised.

  51. Ahmad Mapira says:

    Something is fishy here guys. What’s wrong with you Malawians??????. why you signed adoption papers at first place while you had so called relatives or extended family. Why these extended family failed to send mercy to school????????????. For your information, Mercy is still a child and not working where do you think she can get money to support you so called extended family????. Please stop these stupid ideas and find something better you can do. idiots!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!.

  52. Tili Chenene says:

    Define Adoption.

  53. Nachipanti says:

    A Maunde atumidwa kuti atchuke basi… Zamkutu izo anena iwo… This kid Mercy James looks stunning and akanakhala kuti Madonna didnt adopt her bwezi mwana ameneyu kulibe ndithu… Agogo akewa akuona ngati Mercy James pano ndi donor.. Musiyeni aphunzire maphunziro and zabwino zili mtsogolo. Inu agogo lanu tsogolo munapanga and munakanika kumthandiza Mercy. Ena anabwera kudzakuthangatani nde lero ayipe?? Muisova

  54. nathan says:

    useless grandfather! you think this is an investment, huh!?

  55. Wise one says:

    He just want to teach her how he flies during the night (ufiti basi). No don’t allow him to meet her,

  56. James Liuma says:

    Money money . Money the root of all evil.

    1. Redeemed says:

      Point of correction, The LOVE of money is the root of all evil, else we wouldnt be striving for the root of evil.

  57. Uhudi says:

    Mwayapo a Malawi sopano, dzana munali patsogolo kusutsana ndi ma Civil Society pamene amati payenera kukhala dongosolo yoyenera. Lero mwana wayamba kudya money mukuti ayi ayenera achiti izi ndi izo. A Malawi phuma bwanji?

  58. yes says:


  59. KUCHITEKETE says:


  60. nikisi says:

    The adoption law in malawi is very clear.The adopted child belongs to adoptive parents and not otherwise.The adoptive parents are never a source of income to the biological parents,they never sold the adopted child, but the court grants an order for adoption in the best interest and welfare of the child.

  61. Phodogoma says:

    Musayambepo madnna wakuthandizanetu.

    1. truth says:

      Mercy is legally yr daughter no need to buy favours. Instil good morals in her not prostitution.

  62. Timesbookshop says:

    Its not a bad idea to adopt a poor malawian but she must take the children to their famioly whenever she is in. So in this case, malawi govt shud be responsible and advise madonna about our culture and the visit to the childrens home. What is wrong with that?

    1. Chembe lumbe says:

      What culture …..key word “adoption”. It’s not sending your kid to a distant cousin In town.

    2. ma says:

      What is wrong is that these people damped Mercy in an orphanage where Madonna found her very sickly. They didn’t want to take care of her then and they have no moral ground to claim to care for her now because she could have probably been dead without Madonna’s intervention.

    3. buluzi says:

      shurrup- how many have you adopted!??? shut up your big fat mouth!! useless animal!! leave Madonna alone- what culture leaves children in orphanages in the first place!! where were her hopelessly lazy and stupid realtives!!! s

    4. Times bookshop you are another idiot and uneducated stupid bastard. Do you know the meaning of adoption? Nyasa times please stop putting these musketeers like this one and Maunde in the picture, you are doing harm and injustice to poor Mercy who has a good home and has to focus on her future. Agalu inu

      1. Timesbookshop says:

        Pathako pa njuchi, iwenso ndiwe kape. She adopted the child yes but she must see her roots atleast once in a while since madonna manages to come home, adzipitako. Fotseki

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