Malawi's highest court plans to announce Friday whether the pop singer Madonna can adopt a second child from the impoverished southern African country, the pop star's lawyer said Thursday.
The lawyer, Alan Chinula, said the ruling would be issued at 9 a.m.
Madonna appealed after a lower court ruled she could not adopt Chifundo "Mercy" James because she had not been screened over time in Malawi. The lower court said the residency rules were bent when Madonna adopted her son David from Malawi last year.
During a hearing in May, the three judges of the Supreme Court of Appeal heard constitutional expert Modechai Msiska argue on Madonna's behalf that, although residence was a factor, it would be unconstitutional if adhering to the requirement negated a child's rights.
Johns Gulumba, a lawyer for Eye of the Child, an independent group that opposes the adoption, argued before the appeals court that following the rules kept the doors closed to potential child abusers, and foreign adoptions should be the last resort.
Madonna found the girl in 2006 at Kondanani Children's Village, an orphanage in Bvumbwe just south of the commercial capital of Blantyre. It was the same year Madonna began adoption proceedings for David, whom she found at another orphanage in the central Mchinji district.
Madonna has founded a charity, Raising Malawi, which helps feed, educate and provide medical care for some of Malawi's more than 1 million orphans, half of whom have lost parents to AIDS.