Madonna has been given a boost in her bid to adopt a second child from Malawi - the country's Human Rights Commission has launched an investigation of the child's wellbeing at an African orphanage.
Madonna had her request for an interim adoption of three-year-old Mercy James turned down by a court in the country's capital Lilongwe last Friday.
The singer had James removed from the Kondanai Children's Home and placed under the care of a nanny at a luxury lodge during her stay in the country, but the tot was returned to the orphanage after the adoption bid was rejected.
Madonna has launched an appeal against the court's ruling, and now the Malawi Human Rights Commission has stepped into the debate.
The Commission's head of legal services, Grace Malera, met with Madonna's lawyer Alan Chinula this week to discuss the judge's ruling, reports People.com.
Malera says: "We want to make sure that the rights of the child are fully protected."
Chinula adds: "Judge Chombo's ruling was quite a surprise and the Malawi Human Rights Commission's (investigation) confirms this. We believe the honorable judge erred in her ruling because we believe the rights of the child were not fully considered."
According to family records, Mercy James's mother died shortly after giving birth to her January, 2006 and she was placed in the orphanage because her extended family members were too poor to raise her.
Madonna's adoption of Malawian tot David Banda, three, was made official last year following two years of legal wrangling. She is also mum to Rocco, eight, from her marriage to Guy Ritchie, and Lourdes, from a previous relationship.