Trafficking in Persons Report 2008 - Angola
|Publisher||United States Department of State|
|Author||Office to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons|
|Publication Date||4 June 2008|
|Cite as||United States Department of State, Trafficking in Persons Report 2008 - Angola, 4 June 2008, available at: http://www.refworld.org/docid/484f99ff1d.html [accessed 23 September 2014]|
ANGOLA (Tier 2)
Angola is a source country for a small but significant number of women and children trafficked for the purposes of forced labor and sexual exploitation. Angolan women and girls are trafficked within the country for domestic servitude and commercial sexual exploitation, while young men are trafficked internally for agricultural or unskilled labor. Anecdotal reports point to South Africa, the Democratic Republic of the Congo (D.R.C.), Namibia, and Portugal as the primary destination points for Angolans who are trafficked transnationally. Government officials report that trafficking is on the rise as more border posts open with neighboring countries. Small numbers of young Angolan men are trafficked through Zambia into debt-bonded agricultural work in Namibia. Congolese children are trafficked to Angola. International organizations describe conflicting anecdotal reports that children were trafficked into the country to work in diamond mines, but were unable to confirm or deny the reports.
The Government of Angola does not fully comply with the minimum standards for the elimination of trafficking; however, it is making significant efforts to do so.
Recommendations for Angola: Strengthen legal and victim support frameworks by drafting and enacting anti-trafficking legislation that prohibits all forms of trafficking and provides for victim protections; increase the capacity of law enforcement officials to recognize, respond to, and document instances of trafficking; and launch a campaign to increase public awareness of human trafficking at the provincial and community levels.
The government's anti-trafficking law enforcement efforts were modest during the reporting period. Angolan law does not prohibit trafficking in persons, although elements of its constitution and statutory laws, including those criminalizing forced and bonded labor, could be used to prosecute trafficking cases. Penal code revisions that will criminalize human trafficking are pending parliamentary approval. Statistics on the government's criminal prosecutions and convictions during the last year were not publicly available, reflecting a general lack of transparency in conducting judicial proceedings. A suspected trafficker stopped at a border post between Angola and the D.R.C was arrested while transporting two children across the border without parental authorization. The man was charged with illegal transport of children across national boundaries and awaits prosecution. The Children's Affairs court system has jurisdiction to adjudicate child labor and trafficking violations, but only functions in the capital province of Luanda. In 2007, 15 children being trafficked from Luanda to the D.R.C. were found by immigration officials and the government's National Institute for the Child (INAC) in Zaire province near the Congolese border; police arrested two suspected traffickers. In other known cases, police were unable to identify the traffickers. The government began investigating one trafficking case in 2007, but records of this case were lost when the Department of Criminal Investigation's building collapsed in April 2008. The Ministry of the Interior (MOI) collaborated with IOM to provide anti-trafficking training to police, immigration agents, investigators, and representatives from the Ministries of Justice, Foreign Affairs, and Social Assistance and Reintegration (MINARS) during the reporting period. In March 2008, the MOI conducted a two-day internal workshop on human trafficking to discuss victim assistance, migration management, and border control; IOM provided trafficking-specific training to workshop participants.
The government provided basic assistance for trafficking victims on a limited, ad hoc basis, relying heavily on partnerships with religious organizations and civil society for the delivery of most social assistance in the country over the last year. The Ministry of Women and Family Affairs and MINARS each operate a limited number of shelters that are used to accommodate trafficking victims. During the reporting period, INAC and UNICEF continued their joint development of Child Protection Networks that bring together government officials and civil society at the municipal and provincial levels to coordinate social policy and protective assistance to children. Active in all 18 provinces, these networks served as "SOS Centers" through which crime victims between the ages of nine and 16, including trafficking victims, accessed a variety of services provided by various government ministries. The network in Huila Province, for instance, was able to detect and prevent several instances of trafficking and exploitative child labor over the reporting period; no mechanism exists to track cases or provide statistics on numbers assisted. Victims over the age of 16 were referred to shelters and social services provided by a quasi-governmental organization.
The government's efforts to prevent trafficking improved incrementally over the reporting period. During the year, the MOI was designated as the lead agency for the development and implementation of an anti-trafficking strategy, the first time a single ministry has been so tasked. To prevent child trafficking, the Immigration Service operated checkpoints at the international airport, border posts, and select internal locations, such as the trafficking hotspot of Santa Clara in Cunene Province, which screened minors for proper travel documentation. INAC's six mobile provincial teams also conducted spot checks of suspected child trafficking routes by stopping vehicles transporting children to check for identity cards, proof of relationship to the children, and parental permission for the child's travel. In July 2007, the government hosted the Third African Association of State Attorney Generals to discuss the fight against human trafficking and domestic violence. In June 2007, the government conducted a public awareness campaign for Children's Month designed to raise awareness that all forms of violence against children, including child trafficking, are criminal acts. The campaign included pamphlets on children's rights, banners, newspaper articles, and radio and television spots. Government statements against prostitution of children appeared frequently in national media. The government did not undertake efforts to reduce demand for commercial sex acts during the reporting period. Angola has not ratified the 2000 UN TIP Protocol.