Education officials in Malawi have attacked Madonna for unveiling plans to build ten schools in the country, a year after she was forced to scrap a project to build a girls' academy.
Madonna, who has adopted two children from Malawi, announced last month that her Raising Malawi charity was teaming up with non-profit group buildOn to create the ten schools instead.
But John Bisika, Malawi's national secretary for education, science and technology, said: ''We have had no written or verbal communication. We just read about it in the papers … For someone to go to the papers and say, 'I'm building schools', without telling the government, I find it a strange way of working.''
The singer's initial plan to construct a $15 million school for about 400 girls just outside the capital, Lilongwe, was scrapped last year without a brick being laid. The board of Raising Malawi was fired.
Mr Bisika said: ''She told us she would build an academy for girls. We gave her land and had a ground-breaking ceremony. The next thing we hear is the plan has been abandoned.'' A spokeswoman for Madonna disputed the claim there was a lack of consultation, showing a letter addressed to Malawi's education minister from the Global Philanthropy Group, which manages Raising Malawi.