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Last Updated: Friday, 13 October 2006, 05:04 GMT 06:04 UK
Madonna flies out after adoption
Madonna has visited several orphanages while in Malawi
The US singer Madonna has left the African state of Malawi after getting legal approval to adopt a one-year-old boy called David.

Journalists who watched her leave were unable to approach her plane to see whether the child was with her.

A judge at a high court in Lilongwe approved the official application filed by the star, who will share custody with her husband Guy Ritchie.

No official statement has been released by the London-based singer.

She and her husband were kept waiting at the airport for what one army officer said was immigration clearance, without elaborating.

'Lovely couple'

Benston Kilembe, Malawi's director of child welfare services, said earlier that the celebrity couple had "followed the normal processes".

Madonna promised me that as the child grows she will bring him back to visit
Yohame Banda, natural father of the adopted boy

The boy's father, Yohame Banda, said he had met Madonna and Ritchie at the court as part of the formalities.

"They are a lovely couple," said Mr Banda.

"She asked me many questions. She and her husband seem happy with David. I am happy for him.

"Madonna promised me that as the child grows she will bring him back to visit."

On Wednesday, Mr Banda told reporters that his wife Marita had died a month after the baby's birth from related complications.

Since then the child had been cared for at the Home of Hope Orphan Care Centre in Mchinji, a village near the border with Zambia.

The 48-year-old singer already has two children, five-year-old son Rocco and nine-year-old daughter Lourdes.

Madonna and Guy Ritchie in Malawi

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