London, Apr 5 (ANI): Madonna's plans of adopting Mercy James dealt another blow after the Malawian child's "father" came forward and insisted that he was looking forward to being part of her life.
James Kambewa, 24, who fled in disgrace after Mercy's mother Mwandida, who was a 15-year-old schoolgirl at the time, fell pregnant, told The Mirror: "She is my daughter and I want her to live with me."
Mwandida died eight days after giving birth. James has never been seen in the family's home village of Thwonde in southern Malawi since the outcry.
In fact Malawi authorities had always believed that Mercy was an orphan and had failed to find her father.
Now, James is ready to prove he is the biological dad by taking a DNA test - and is desperate to meet his daughter for the first time.
James told in an interview how he was made to believe Mercy had died along with her mother during childbirth.
Security guard James, 24, said: "Discovering my daughter is alive is a miracle. Now I call on all my countrymen to help me have my child. I will take a DNA test and appear in court to prove Mercy is my child. I am willing to do whatever it takes."
He added: "I bear no grudge against Madonna. But I am Mercy's father and I want her to stay with me. God will take care of us."
Following the revelation, Madonna's hopes of adopting the child are in tatters.
The 50-year-old singer was planning to appeal last week's shock decision by Malawian judge Esme Chombo to block her adoption of Mercy.
The adoption application was dismissed on the grounds that prospective parents must be resident in Malawi for 18 to 24 months before adopting. (ANI)