Madonna Leaves Malawi After Charity Visit -
Published: April 22, 2007
Filed at 2:46 p.m. ET
LILONGWE (Reuters) - Madonna jetted out of Malawi on Sunday after a six-day visit focused on her charity work in the impoverished southern African country.
Madonna, wearing dark glasses and carrying the one-year-old Malawian boy she is adopting, boarded a private jet at Lilongwe airport at the end of her visit, a Reuters witness said.
Officials said she spent Saturday meeting people involved in the charities she set up in Malawi.
Raising Malawi, a charity co-founded by Madonna, provides food, education and health services to 32,000 orphans in the country through seven community-based organizations.
This is Madonna's second visit to Malawi six months after she and her film director husband Guy Ritchie signed interim adoption papers for custody of local toddler David Banda.
David will stay with the couple for 18 months at their home in London before a decision by the Malawian government on whether to finalize the adoption.
Rights groups have accused Madonna of using her fame and wealth to circumvent the country's adoption rules, but the singer has insisted she is following the law.
Madonna's spokeswoman has denied media reports the American star plans to adopt a second child and said she is focusing on her charity work in Malawi during this visit.
On Thursday Madonna visited the Home of Hope orphanage where David once lived, and where witnesses said he met his biological father.
HIV/AIDS has killed millions in Malawi, leaving more than a million orphans.