(AFP) – 6 hours ago
BLANTYRE — US pop star Madonna jets into Malawi on Monday to inspect construction work of a 15-million-dollar girls' academy by her charity Raising Malawi, the academy's chief executive officer said on Friday.
The singer, who will travel with her biological children Rocco and Lourdes and two adopted Malawian children David Banda and Chifundo 'Mercy' James, will visit the academy on Tuesday, said CEO Anjimile Mtila-Oponyo in a statement.
Madonna broke the ground in October last year for the school, which will admit 500 girls from poor backgrounds on the outskirts of administrative capital Lilongwe.
On Monday, Madonna is also due to visit a poverty alleviation project in a village in the Mchinji district where she adopted Banda amid some controversy in 2006.
Construction of the academy was delayed over a dispute between her charity and some 200 villagers who claimed they were not adequately compensated for land used to build the school.
The government forcibly removed the villagers, who were paid 500,000 dollars in compensation by Madonna's charity.
Malawi is one of the world's poorest nations, with more than half of the population of 13 million living on less than one dollar a day.
The star is funding several charities in Malawi, including homes for children with AIDS. She has built a multi-purpose community centre 50 kilometres from Lilongwe which looks after more than 8000 orphans.