Last Updated: Wednesday, 20 August 2014, 14:37 GMT

2007 Findings on the Worst Forms of Child Labor - Angola

Publisher United States Department of Labor
Author Bureau of International Labor Affairs
Publication Date 27 August 2008
Cite as United States Department of Labor, 2007 Findings on the Worst Forms of Child Labor - Angola, 27 August 2008, available at: http://www.refworld.org/docid/48caa45bc.html [accessed 20 August 2014]
DisclaimerThis is not a UNHCR publication. UNHCR is not responsible for, nor does it necessarily endorse, its content. Any views expressed are solely those of the author or publisher and do not necessarily reflect those of UNHCR, the United Nations or its Member States.

Selected Statistics and Indicators on Child Labor100
Working children, 5-14 years (%), 2001:25.7
Working boys, 5-14 years (%), 2001:25.6
Working girls, 5-14 years (%), 2001:25.9
Working children by sector, 5-14 years (%):
     – Agriculture
     – Manufacturing
     – Services
     – Other
Minimum age for work:14
Compulsory education age:14
Free public education:Yes*
Gross primary enrollment rate (%), 1999:64
Net primary enrollment rate (%):
School attendance, children 5-14 years (%), 2001:65.4
Survival rate to grade 5 (%):
ILO-IPEC participating country:Yes
* Must pay for miscellaneous school expenses

Incidence and Nature of Child Labor

In Angola, most working children are found in the informal sector.101 Children in rural areas are more likely to work than those in urban areas. Children living in provinces most affected by the country's lengthy civil war are more likely to work than those in less affected provinces.102 Children work in agriculture on family farms and plantations; in domestic service; charcoal production; domestic chores such as fetching water; and street vending.103 Boys and girls are engaged in loading and transporting heavy items. Boys are also engaged in washing cars and performing manual labor.104 In all 18 provinces children grow and sell vegetables, and engage in commercial agriculture and selling other goods; in Benguela and Kwanza Sul these children have been found to often be employed for pay by members of the community outside their families.105 Some children in rural areas also work in artesian diamond mining.106

The combination of poverty and years of war has led to an influx of orphaned and abandoned children working in urban areas.107 At least 10,000 children work on the streets of the capital city of Luanda, according to UNICEF estimates. Street children are also common in Benguela, Huambo, and Kwanza Sul provinces.108 While some street children had been previously kidnapped by military forces,109 or had become displaced or separated from their families during the civil war,110 the majority of street children that work on the streets return to their family homes at night.111 Children working on the streets shine shoes, wash cars, and carry water.112 Many are exploited in prostitution and are at high risk of sexual and other forms of violence and trafficking.113

Children are engaged in forced prostitution in Angola, and some are trafficked internally for this purpose, as well as for agricultural work.114 Children are also engaged in the sale and transport of illegal drugs. There have been reports of Angolan children crossing the border into Namibia to engage in prostitution with truck drivers.115 In remote areas along the border with Namibia, children are forced to work as couriers for cross-border trade by truck drivers attempting to avoid importation fees.116 Children formerly associated with fighting forces and former child soldiers are among those most at risk for engaging in the worst forms of child labor.117

Child Labor Laws and Enforcement

The minimum age for employment and apprenticeship in Angola is 14 years.118 Children between ages 14 and 18 years are not permitted to work at night, under dangerous conditions, or in activities requiring great physical effort. Children under 16 years are restricted from working in factories.119 Violations of child labor laws can be punished by fines.120

Angolan laws prohibit forced or bonded child labor.121 The minimum age for voluntary recruitment into military service is 18 years for men and 20 years for women, while the minimum age for conscription is 20 years.122 Trafficking in persons is not specifically prohibited in Angola, but laws prohibit kidnapping, forced labor or bonded servitude, prostitution, illegal entry into the country, and pornography.123 Sexual relations with children under 15 years can be categorized as sexual abuse and can result in up to 8 years of imprisonment or a fine.124

The Inspector General of the Ministry of Public Administration, Employment, and Social Security (MAPESS) has the ultimate authority to enforce labor laws, and the Ministry of Family and Women's Affairs plays a major role in the investigation of child labor complaints.125 According to USDOS, the Government does not have the capacity to regulate child labor in the informal sector, where most children work.126

The Government of Angola engaged in activities to combat child trafficking. The National Institute for the Child (INAC) conducted spot checks of travelers along suspected child trafficking routes, through the use of six mobile teams working in the provinces. The Immigration Services also continued to operate checkpoints at many transit locations to verify the travel documentation of minors.127

Angola was 1 of 24 countries to adopt the Multilateral Cooperation Agreement to Combat Trafficking in Persons and the Joint Plan of Action against Trafficking in Persons, especially Women and Children in West and Central African Regions.128 As part of the Multilateral Cooperation Agreement, the governments agreed to use the child trafficking monitoring system developed by the USDOL-funded ILO-IPEC LUTRENA project; to assist each other in the investigation, arrest, and prosecution of trafficking offenders; and to protect, rehabilitate, and reintegrate trafficking victims.129

Current Government Policies and Programs to Eliminate the Worst Forms of Child Labor

In 2007, the Government established the National Children's Council, comprised of various ministries and civil society organizations, to coordinate policies to combat exploitive child labor, sexual exploitation, and trafficking.130 The Government's Special Task Force (comprised of representatives from the Ministry of Social Assistance and Reintegration, the INAC, and the Ministry of Women and Family) continues to implement a plan to address the needs of street children.131 The Ministry of Health provided funds to combat child prostitution through raising children's awareness about HIV/AIDS.132 The Ministry of the Interior is partnering with IOM to train immigration agents and law enforcement officials to recognize and respond to cases of child trafficking.133

The Government of Angola participates in a project to combat exploitive child labor in Angola through the provision of educational services, implemented by Christian Children's Fund and World Learning for Educational Development. Funded in 2007 by USDOL at USD 3.48 million, and by Christian Children's Fund at USD 1.25 million, the project targets 2,653 children for withdrawal and 4,347 children for prevention from exploitive child labor in the capital city of Luanda and the province of Benguela.134

The Government works closely with IOM and UNICEF on efforts to combat trafficking. In 2007, the Government implemented a campaign to raise public awareness of child trafficking and issued numerous statements against child prostitution.135 The INAC is currently working with the MAPESS, the Ministry of Interior, and municipal governments to implement a project funded by the Government of St. Kitts and Nevis to prevent child labor among street children in Benguela and Lobito.136 The INAC also continues to work with UNICEF to develop Child Protection Networks at the provincial and municipal levels, which bring together government and civil society actors to coordinate their efforts to assist children. These networks helped children who were victims of trafficking to receive government services from a number of ministries.137 A new Child Protection Network was launched in the province of Luanda in 2007.138


100 For statistical data not cited here, see the Data Sources and Definitions section. For data on ratifications and ILO-IPEC membership, see the Executive Summary. For minimum age for admission to work, age to which education is compulsory, and free public education, see F. Blanco Allais, Children's work in Angola: An overview, Rome: The Understanding Children's Work Project, December 2007, 19-20; available from http://www.ucwproject.org/pdf/publications/standard_blanco_angola.pdf. See also ILO, C138 Minimum Age Convention, 1973 Ratified by Angola on 13:06:2001, accessed March 15, 2008; available from http://www.ilo.org/ilolex/english/newratframeE.htm. See also UNESCO, EFA Global Monitoring Report 2005: Education for All – The Quality Imperative, Paris, 2004; available from http://unesdoc.unesco.org/images/0013/001373/137333e.pdf. See also Clare Ignatowski, Cristina Rodrigues, and Ramon Balestino, Youth Assessment in Angola, Washington, D.C.: USAID, March 31, 2006, 8-9; available from http://www.usaid.gov/ao/youthassessment.pdf.

101 U.S. Department of State, "Angola," in Country Reports on Human Rights Practices – 2007, Washington, DC, March 11, 2008, section 6d; available from http://www.state.gov/g/drl/rls/hrrpt/2007. See also UN Committee of Experts, Consideration of Reports Submitted by States Parties under Article 44 of the Convention – Concluding Observations: Angola, 37th session, November 3, 2004, para 64.

102 Allais, Children's work in Angola, 10 and 12.

103 U.S. Department of State, "Country Reports – 2007: Angola," section 6d.

104 Clare Ignatowski, Cristina Rodrigues, and Balestino, Youth Assessment in Angola, 10. See also US Department of State official, E-mail communication to USDOL official, July 24, 2008.

105 Khulisa Management Services, Situational Assessment of Child Labor in Benguella and Kwanza Sul Provinces, Angola, Johannesburg, February 20, 2007, 40-41. See also US Department of State official, E-mail communication, July 24, 2008.

106 Rafael Marques, Beyond 'Conflict Diamonds': A New Report on Human Rights and Angolan Diamonds, Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars, March 24, 2005. See also US Department of State official, E-mail communication, July 24, 2008.

107 U.S. Embassy – Luanda, reporting, September 16, 2005.

108 U.S. Department of State, "Country Reports – 2007: Angola," section 6d.

109 Christian Children's Fund and World Learning for International Development, Education to Prevent Child Labor in Angola: ONJOI Application, Richmond, March 9, 2007, 8.

110 U.S. Embassy – Luanda official, conference call to USDOL official, March 9, 2005. See also U.S. Department of State, "Country Reports – 2007: Angola."

111 United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs, Humanitarian Situation in Angola: Monthly Analysis, October-November 2004, 2004; available from http://www.reliefweb.int/rw/rwb.nsf/0/cc3855c3fc3ff171c1256f70003834fa?OpenDocument. See also U.S. Department of State, "Country Reports – 2007: Angola," section 5.

112 U.S. Department of State, "Country Reports – 2007: Angola," section 5.

113 UN Committee of Experts, CRC Concluding Observations: Angola, para 66. See also Governo de Unidade e Reconciliação Nacional República de Angola, Relatório de Seguimento das Metas da Cimeira Mundial pela Infância, December 2000, 13; available from http://www.unicef.org/specialsession/how_country/edr_angola_pt.PDF.

114 U.S. Department of State, "Country Reports – 2007: Angola," section 6d. See also U.S. Embassy – Luanda, reporting, March 3, 2008, para 3A.

115 U.S. Department of State, "Country Reports – 2007: Angola," section 5.

116 U.S. Department of State, "Angola (Tier 2)," in Trafficking in Persons Report – 2007, Washington, DC, June 12, 2007; available from http://www.state.gov/g/tip/rls/tiprpt/2007/.

117 Christian Children's Fund and World Learning for International Development, ONJOI Application, 5.

118 Allais, Children's work in Angola, 19-20. See also ILO, Minimum Age Convention Ratified by Angola. See also U.S. Department of State, "Country Reports – 2007: Angola," section 6d.

119 U.S. Department of State, "Country Reports – 2007: Angola," section 6d.

120 Ibid.

121 Ibid., section 6c.

122 Coalition to Stop the Use of Child Soldiers, "Angola," in Child Soldiers Global Report 2004, London, 2004; available from http://www.child-soldiers.org/document_get.php?id=757.

123 U.S. Department of State, "Trafficking in Persons Report – 2007: Angola." See also U.S. Department of State, "Country Reports – 2007: Angola," section 5.

124 U.S. Embassy – Luanda, reporting, December 14, 2007, para 2.

125 U.S. Department of State, "Country Reports – 2007: Angola," section 6d.

126 Ibid.

127 U.S. Department of State, "Trafficking in Persons Report – 2007: Angola."

128 ECOWAS and ECCAS, Multilateral Cooperation Agreement to Combat Trafficking in Persons, Especially Women and Children, in West and Central Africa, Abuja, July 7, 2006. See also ILO-IPEC Geneva official, E-mail communication to USDOL official, November 16, 2006.

129 ECOWAS and ECCAS, Multilateral Cooperation Agreement to Combat Trafficking in West and Central Africa. See also ILO-IPEC, Combating the Trafficking of Children for Labor Exploitation in West and Central Africa (LUTRENA), technical progress report, Geneva, September 1, 2007. See also Emmanuel Goujon, African States Sign up to Fight Human Trafficking, press release, Agence France Presse, Abuja, July 7, 2006.

130 U.S. Department of State, "Country Reports – 2007: Angola," section 5.

131 U.S. Embassy – Luanda official, E-mail communication to USDOL official, April 10, 2007. See also United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs, Humanitarian Situation in Angola: Oct.-Nov. 2004.

132 U.S. Embassy – Luanda, reporting, December 14, 2007.

133 US Department of State official, E-mail communication, July 24, 2008.

134 Christian Children's Fund and World Learning for International Development, ONJOI Application.

135 U.S. Embassy – Luanda, reporting, March 3, 2008, paras 3E and 6B.

136 Khulisa Management Services, Child Labor Assessment in Benguella and Kwanza Sul, 59.

137 U.S. Department of State, "Trafficking in Persons Report – 2007: Angola."

138 U.S. Department of State, "Country Reports – 2007: Angola," section 5.

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