Malawi Officials Criticise Madonna’s School Plans

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March 14, 2012 | 5:11am EST

Malawi government officials have criticised Madonna for failing to obtain approval for a proposal to build 10 new schools.
The pop superstar announced in January she is pressing ahead with plans to construct new educational centres in the impoverished African nation, despite her Raising Malawi foundation falling into crisis last year amid allegations of financial problems.

Ministry of Education spokeswoman Lindiwe Chide tells Reuters the announcement came as a surprise to Malawi authorities since Madonna did not consult them about her plan.

Chide says, “Now she decides to announce that she plans to build 10 schools without getting authority from us again. We now feel like this is all about propping up her global image and not in our interest…

“She has no mandate to decide where she wants to build a school because she doesn’t know our needs and where we want new schools… She first needed to consult us, get permission from us before doing anything.”

Madonna, who has two adopted children from Malawi, abandoned a plan to build a girls’ school outside the capital of Lilongwe last year after dissolving her charity’s board of directors.