Findings on the Worst Forms of Child Labor - Angola

2014 Findings on the Worst Forms of Child Labor:

Moderate Advancement

In 2014, Angola made a moderate advancement in efforts to eliminate the worst forms of child labor. The Government acceded to the Palermo Protocol, passed a new law protecting all children from human trafficking for sexual and economic exploitation, established a Commission to Combat Trafficking in Persons, and trained criminal law enforcement officials. However, children in Angola are engaged in child labor, including in agriculture and mining. There are gaps in the legal framework to protect children from exploitation, including a lack of prohibitions on the use of children in illicit activities. Additionally, there is little publicly available information on the Government's efforts to enforce laws on child labor, including its worst forms.


Expand All

Children in Angola are engaged in child labor, including in agriculture and mining.(1-7) Table 1 provides key indicators on children's work and education in Angola.

Table 1. Statistics on Children's Work and Education

Working children, ages 5 to 14 (% and population):

25.7 (694,458)

School attendance, ages 5 to 14 (%):


Children combining work and school, ages 7 to 14 (%):


Primary completion rate (%):


Source for primary completion rate: Data from 2011, published by UNESCO Institute for Statistics, 2015.(8
Source for all other data: Understanding Children's Work Project's analysis of statistics from Multiple Indicator Cluster Survey 2, 2001.(9)

Based on a review of available information, Table 2 provides an overview of children's work by sector and activity.

Table 2. Overview of Children's Work by Sector and Activity




Planting and picking tomatoes,* production of rice* (1-5)

Fishing,* animal herding* (1, 6)


Artisanal diamond mining (1, 7)

Mining coal* (3)

Construction,* making and transporting bricks* (1-3, 6, 10, 11)


Street work, including vending, car washing, and shoe shining* (1, 3, 6, 11-14)

Transporting heavy loads (1, 3, 6)

Domestic work (1, 6)

Categorical Worst Forms of Child Labor‡

Commercial sexual exploitation sometimes as a result of human trafficking (2, 6, 12)

Work in agriculture,* construction,* and domestic work,* each as a result of human trafficking (2, 15, 16)

Forced labor in artisanal diamond mining* (2)

Used in illicit activities, including drug trafficking, moving illicit goods across the border of Angola and Namibia, and working as thieves in criminal gangs (2, 6, 14, 16)

* Evidence of this activity is limited and/or the extent of the problem is unknown.
‡ Child labor understood as the worst forms of child labor per se under Article 3(a)–(c) of ILO C. 182.

Although the Government collected general information on the prevalence of child labor in its 2008 — 2009 national well-being survey, it has not conducted in-depth research on the worst forms of child labor.(17)

Angolan children are trafficked within the country and internationally for domestic servitude and commercial sexual exploitation.(2) There is evidence of girls as young as age 13 in commercial sexual exploitation.(2) Limited evidence suggests that Congolese migrant children enter Angola for work in diamond-mining districts where they experience conditions of forced labor or commercial sexual exploitation in mining camps.(1, 2) Additionally, human trafficking networks recruit and transport Congolese girls as young as age 12 from the Kasai Occidental province in the Democratic Republic of Congo to Angola for various forms of exploitation.(2)

There is a low rate of birth registration in Angola due to high costs, great distances to service centers, and parents who lack documentation.(18) Registration is necessary to enroll in school and access social services.(19) Additional barriers to education include a lack of school infrastructure, teaching materials, and qualified teachers.(14, 18, 20)

Back to Top

Angola has ratified all key international conventions concerning child labor (Table 3).

Table 3. Ratification of International Conventions on Child Labor



ILO C. 138, Minimum Age

ILO C. 182, Worst Forms of Child Labor


UN CRC Optional Protocol on Armed Conflict

UN CRC Optional Protocol on the Sale of Children, Child Prostitution and Child Pornography

Palermo Protocol on Trafficking in Persons

In 2014, Angola ratified the Palermo Protocol on Trafficking in Persons.(21)

The Government has established laws and regulations related to child labor, including its worst forms (Table 4).

Table 4. Laws and Regulations Related to Child Labor




Related Legislation

Minimum Age for Work



Article 282 of the Labor Law (22)

Minimum Age for Hazardous Work



Article 284 of the Labor Law (22, 23)

Prohibition of Hazardous Occupations or Activities for Children



Joint Executive Decree No. 171/10 (24)

Prohibition of Forced Labor



Article 60 of the Constitution of Angola; Article 18 of Law No. 3/14 (25, 26)

Prohibition of Child Trafficking



Articles 19 and 23 of Law No. 3/14; Article 165 of the Penal Code (26, 27)

Prohibition of Commercial Sexual Exploitation of Children



Articles 22 and 23 of Law No. 3/14; Articles 182 — 184 of the Penal Code (26-29)

Prohibition of Using Children in Illicit Activities



Article 7 of Law No. 3/99; Article 157 of the Penal Code (27, 30)

Minimum Age for Compulsory Military Recruitment



Article 2 of the Military Service Law (31)

Minimum Age for Voluntary Military Service



Article 11 of the Military Service Law (31)

Compulsory Education Age



Article 17 of the Basic Law of the Education System (8, 32)

Free Public Education



Article 7 of the Basic Law of the Education System (32)

During the reporting period, the Government passed the Law on the Criminalization of Infractions Surrounding Money Laundering, Law No. 3/14, which protects all children less than 18 years old from human trafficking and forced labor.(26) The new law also penalizes employers or labor agents who confiscate, hide, damage, or destroy workers' identity documents. The penalty for labor or sex trafficking, including acting as an agent of a trafficker, is 8 to 12 years in prison; custodial adults who are complicit in child trafficking may be subject to 2 to 8 years in prison.(26)

The Government's list of hazardous work, established by Joint Executive Decree No. 171/10, prohibits activities for minors including fireworks production, stone mining, animal slaughter, leather production, paper making, and pornography.(24, 33) However, the hazardous work list does not cover all hazardous activities in which Angolan children are involved, including high-seas fishing, diamond mining, informal market vending, and in street work.(34)

The Penal Code protects children under age 16 from child pornography, but this protection does not extend to age 18, and there are no provisions against possession of child pornography.(27)

While Law No. 3/99 contains provisions prohibiting the use of children in drug trafficking, and article 157 of the Penal Code prohibits a child's custodian from employing the child in prohibited activities, research found no law that generally prohibits the use of children in all illicit activities.(27, 30)

The law establishes that primary education is compulsory for 6 years.(32) The Government reported to the UNESCO Institute of Statistics that children begin primary education at 6 years old, making education compulsory until age 12.(8) Ending compulsory education at 12 years of age makes children ages 12 through 14 vulnerable to child labor, as they are not required to attend school but are not legally permitted to work either. In addition, this age conflicts with the National Development Plan (2013 — 2017), which sets the age for compulsory education at 14.(11)

Back to Top

The Government has established institutional mechanisms for the enforcement of laws and regulations on child labor, including its worst forms (Table 5).

Table 5. Agencies Responsible for Child Labor Law Enforcement



The Ministry of Public Administration, Labor, and Social Security (MAPTSS)

Inspect workplaces and identify children who are employed in the formal sector. MAPTSS can fine an employer, or send the case to the Ministry of Interior for further investigation and the Ministry of Justice and Human Rights for prosecution.(6, 28) Employ labor inspectors in all 18 provinces to carry out inspections and joint operations with tax authorities and social service providers.(28)

National Children's Institute (INAC)

Receive complaints about cases of child abuse, including child labor, through its research and investigation branch. INAC's inspection teams conduct regular oversight missions in collaboration with various ministries, the ILO, and civil society.(28, 30)

Ministry of Justice and Human Rights, including the Attorney General's Office and Court for Minors

Prosecute child labor cases, including the worst forms of child labor.(28) The Court for Minors handles protective proceedings where a child has been the victim of abuse, exploitation, or neglect.(35)

Ministry of the Interior and its agencies, including the National Police, Border Police, and Immigration Services

Enforce criminal laws and conduct operations and investigations related to forced labor, human trafficking, and commercial sexual exploitation.(1, 11, 30)

Law enforcement agencies in Angola took actions to combat child labor, including its worst forms.

Labor Law Enforcement

In 2014, Angola employed 187 labor inspectors. According to the Government, the number of inspectors is insufficient to effectively monitor the labor market.(1) Inspectors, especially those outside of Luanda, lack necessary resources and sufficient training to carry out their work.(1)

The National Children's Institute (INAC) collects information from the provinces on the number of child labor cases; however, no information is available regarding child labor inspections, violations, citations, and penalties.(11, 16)

MAPTSS inspectors work with INAC and the Ministry of Assistance and Social Reintegration (MINARS) to ensure that victims of child labor receive the appropriate social services.(30)

Criminal Law Enforcement

Research did not find information on the number of investigators responsible for investigating cases of the worst forms of child labor. According to the Government, 240 Angolan officials were trained on the new anti-trafficking in persons legislation during the reporting period.(11)

In 2014, an Angolan national acquired a child in Huila province, intending to take her to the Democratic Republic of Congo to sell her as a sex slave.(36, 37) Police authorities apprehended the perpetrator in Cabinda province and the victim received assistance from social services.(37) In addition, a National Police investigation resulted in the arrest of two Angolan citizens for facilitating the transport and delivery of two children to France. The Attorney General's Office is investigating the case in preparation for prosecution.(16, 36) Research did not find further information regarding investigations, prosecutions, and convictions.

The National Police and Immigration Services refer victims of the worst forms of child labor to INAC and MINARS to receive social services; victims of child trafficking are referred to INAC's Child Support Centers.(16, 30)

Back to Top

Although the Government has established a coordination mechanism on human trafficking, research found no evidence of coordinating mechanisms to combat child labor, including all its worst forms (Table 6).

Table 6. Mechanisms to Coordinate Government Efforts on Child Labor

Coordinating Body

Role & Description

The Ministry of Assistance and Social Reintegration (MINARS)

Ensure coordination between various Government bodies related to social welfare and victim protection.(1, 38) MINARS has established institutions and a network of shelters to protect children from abusive, exploitative, and dangerous situations.(37)

National Children's Institute (INAC)

Coordinate Government child protection services. Work with MINARS to provide shelter and help reintegrate children found in child labor situations with their families.(28)

National Council of Children (CNAC)

Coordinate the Government's efforts on children's issues, including the worst forms of child labor. Led by MINARS and comprised of 17 ministries and related organizations, including the Ministries of Justice and Human Rights, Interior, MAPTSS, Education, Culture, as well as UNICEF, religious institutions, and civil society organizations.(1)

Commission to Combat Trafficking in Persons*

Coordinate enforcement efforts on human trafficking, including child trafficking for labor and sexual exploitation. Composed of representatives from the Ministries of Justice and Human Rights, MINARS, MAPTSS, Interior, and relevant Government agencies including the Office of the Attorney General, Immigration Services, and the National Police.(11) Established in November 2014, the commission is currently working on a national strategy to combat human trafficking.(11)

* Mechanism to coordinate efforts to address child labor was created during the reporting period.

The process for selecting civil society members of the National Council of Children (CNAC) lacks transparency.(29)

Back to Top

The Government of Angola has established policies related to child labor, including its worst forms (Table 7).

Table 7. Policies Related to Child Labor



Community of Portuguese-Speaking Countries (CPLP) Action Plan to Combat Child Labor

Establishes four target areas to combat child labor: the exchange of information and experiences; awareness-raising campaigns; use of statistical methodologies to collect child labor data; and technical cooperation and training.(39-42) During the reporting period, the Government represented the CPLP at the 320th session of the Board of Directors of the International Labor Organization.(42)

The Eleven Commitments for Angolan Children

Outlines the Government's main policies for protecting children's rights; goals include protecting children from exploitation and providing education to every child.(12, 43, 44) During the reporting period, the Government raised awareness on the importance of education, built or refurbished 293 schools in Zaire province, and increased the number of teachers in the country.(30, 45)

National Strategy to Prevent and Combat Violence Against Children

Guides the Government's efforts to address violence against children including physical and psychological violence, child labor, child trafficking, and sexual abuse.(12, 29)

Plan of Action and Intervention against the Sexual and Commercial Exploitation of Children (NPAI SCEC)

Aims to protect and defend the rights of child victims of sexual and economic exploitation, including the rehabilitation and social inclusion of the victims.(34)

Free birth registration and identification cards*

Makes birth registration free for all Angolan citizens until 2016. Allows parents to get Identity Cards for free so that they are able to register their children.(19)

Poverty Reduction Strategy (2005-2015)

Serves as the main policy document that guides the Government's anti-poverty actions. Supports the Millennium Development Goals and includes as its objectives poverty reduction, democratic governance, crisis prevention and recovery, environmental protection, and sustainable development.(46, 47)

National Development Plan* (2013–2017)

Guarantees nine years of compulsory, free education until age 14.(11)

National Action Plan for Education for All (2001–2015)*

Aims to achieve universal primary education by 2015.(12, 29)

* Child labor elimination and prevention strategies do not appear to have been integrated into this policy.

The Government has indicated that the Plan of Action and Intervention against the Sexual and Commercial Exploitation of Children (NPAI SCEC) is unsuitable for the current context and that there is an urgent need to revise it. INAC is in the process of evaluating the NPAI SCEC's implementation, with the goal of strengthening the policy.(34)

Research found that a lack of human and financial resources has hindered progress toward targets of the Education for All Plan.(18)

Back to Top

In 2014, the Government of Angola funded and participated in programs that include the goal of eliminating or preventing child labor, including its worst forms. The Government has other programs that may have an impact on child labor, including its worst forms (Table 8).

Table 8. Social Programs to Address Child Labor



Mobile schools‡

Ministry of Education program that provides education in mobile schools to migrant children who work with their parents in herding cattle.(1) The program specifically targets children at the highest risk of involvement in child labor in southern Angola.(1) Some mobile schools also have kitchens, which facilitate in the Government's school meal program.(1, 48)

Microcredit project‡

MAPTSS program that provides cash assistance to parents so that their children do not need to work.(1)

National Institutes of Job and Professional Training *‡

Government-funded program of 555 centers that provide free, professional training for youth so that they have skills to enter the formal labor market.(1, 49) At least 27,019 young people were trained during the reporting period.(49)

Free meals for children*‡

Government program offering free meals for school children.(1, 28) One such program in Benguela, supported by the U.S. Department of Agriculture, NGOs, and the Government of Angola, is reported to have fed more than 220,000 school children. The Angolan Ministry of Education reports similar programs in the provinces of Lunda Norte and Lunda Sul.(28)

Child Support Centers‡

INAC oversees a national network of Child Support Centers in all 18 provinces that offer health care, psychological care, legal and social assistance, meals, basic education, and family reunification for crime victims, including human trafficking victims, under 18 years of age.(2, 16)

Children's shelters‡

The Ministry of Assistance and Social Reintegration (MINARS), the Ministry of Family and Women's Promotion (MINFAMU), and the Organization of Angolan Women operate 51 children's shelters for child trafficking victims.(2, 37)

* The impact of this program on child labor does not appear to have been studied.
‡ Program is funded by the Government of Angola.

Although Angola has programs that target child labor, the scope of these programs is insufficient to fully address the extent of the problem. Furthermore, research did not identify programs that target children engaged in certain worst forms of child labor, such as commercial sexual exploitation, illicit activities, or forced labor in agriculture, domestic work, or diamond mining.

Back to Top

Based on the reporting above, suggested actions are identified that would advance the elimination of child labor, including its worst forms, in Angola (Table 9).

Table 9. Suggested Government Actions to Eliminate Child Labor, Including its Worst Forms


Suggested Action

Year(s) Suggested

Legal Framework

Ensure that the law prohibits hazardous occupations or activities for children in all relevant sectors in Angola, including work in high-seas fishing, diamond mining, informal market vending, and street work.


Ensure that the legal framework protects all children under age 18 from child pornography and includes penalties for possession of child pornography.


Ensure that the legal framework prohibits the use of children in illicit activities, including thievery or illegal couriering.


Increase the compulsory education age to 14 to be consistent with the National Development Plan.



Strengthen the labor inspection system by increasing the number of labor inspectors, in order to provide adequate coverage of the workforce, and by providing all inspectors with adequate training and the appropriate resources.


Collect child labor information from provincial agencies and make information on child labor inspections, citations, violations, and penalties publicly available.


Make information publicly available regarding the number of law enforcement officials, investigations, prosecutions, and convictions of the worst forms of child labor.



Establish coordinating mechanisms to combat child labor, including in all its worst forms.


Release details on the selection process for civil society members of the CNAC.


Government Policies

Accelerate birth registration and identification processes to promote school enrollment and provide social services to vulnerable children.


Use the results of the 2008-2009 national well-being survey to integrate child labor elimination and prevention strategies into existing policies.


Revise and strengthen the NPAI SCEC and ensure its effective implementation.


Allocate more Government resources to the Education for All Policy to ensure targets are met.


Social Programs

Conduct research on the worst forms of child labor.


Strengthen the education system by providing more funding, schools, and trained teachers.


Assess the impact that existing programs may have on child labor.


Institute programs that target children engaged in commercial sexual exploitation, illicit activities, and forced labor in agriculture, domestic work and diamond mining, and expand existing programs to address the scope of the child labor problem.



Back to Top

1.U.S. Embassy- Luanda. reporting, February 27, 2014.

2.U. S. Department of State. "Angola," in Trafficking in Persons Report- 2014. Washington, DC; June 20, 2014;.

3.Government of Angola. Response to the Questionaire about Child Labor in Angola. [source on file]; 2014.

4.Voice of America. "Angola: Trabalho Infantil em Plantações Chinesas." [online] December 15, 2010 [cited February 20, 2014]; .

5.Gayeta, A. "UNICEF Denuncia Exploração de Menores em Angola." [online] December 24, 2010 [cited February 20, 2014]; .

6.U.S. Department of State. "Angola," in Country Reports on Human Rights Practices- 2013. Washington, DC; February 27, 2014;.

7.Leber, B. Human Rights and Economic Development Issues in the Gemstone and Precious Metals Trade of AGOA Recipient Countries,. submitted in response to U.S. Department of Labor Federal Register Notice (September 23, 2009) "Request for Public Comments on Annual Review of Country Eligibility for Benefits Under the African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA)."

8.UNESCO Institute for Statistics. Gross intake ratio to the last grade of primary. Total. [accessed January 16, 2015];. Data provided is the gross intake ratio to the last grade of primary school. This measure is a proxy measure for primary completion. For more information, please see the "Children's Work and Education Statistics: Sources and Definitions" section of this report.

9.UCW. Analysis of Child Economic Activity and School Attendance Statistics from National Household or Child Labor Surveys. Original data from Multiple Indicator Cluster Survey 2, 2001. Analysis received January 16, 2015. Reliable statistical data on the worst forms of child labor are especially difficult to collect given the often hidden or illegal nature of the worst forms. As a result, statistics on children's work in general are reported in this chart, which may or may not include the worst forms of child labor. For more information on sources used, the definition of working children and other indicators used in this report, please see the "Children's Work and Education Statistics: Sources and Definitions" section of this report.

10.Vieira, A. "Child Labour Cases on the Rise in Angola" [online] June 6, 2013 [cited March 3, 2014];.

11.U.S. Embassy- Luanda. reporting January 21, 2015.

12.ILO-IPEC. Angola: Estudo sobre a Aplicação das Convenções n.° 138 e n.° 182 da OIT e Suas Recomendações na Legislação Nacional dos Países da CPLP. Geneva; December 2012.

13.Constantino, J. "Trabalho Infantil é Estimulado pelos Pais." Jornal de Angola, Luanda, October 15, 2010. [source on file].

14.ILO. The Worst Forms of Child Labor in Conflict and Post Conflict Settings: Results from a Research Project. Turin, International Training Centre; 2010. [source on file].

15.U.S. Embassy- Luanda. reporting, March 2, 2010.

16.U.S. Embassy- Luanda. reporting, February 17, 2015.

17.Ministry of Planning. Inquérito Integrado Sobre o Bem-Estar da População (IBEP) 2008-09. Luanda, National Institute of Statistics; August 2010.

18.UNICEF. UNICEF Annual Report 2013- Angola.

19.Carvalho, V. Eight citizens in a day - A story on birth registration in Angola. UNICEF; November 24 2014.

20.UNICEF. Angola, [cited October 20, 2014.

21.United Nations Treaty Collection. 12. a Protocol to Prevent, Suppress and Punish Trafficking in Persons, Especially Women and Children, Supplementing the United Nations Convention Against Transnational Organized Crime; accessed October 27, 2014;.

22.Government of Angola. Lei Geral do Trabalho de Angola, enacted June 2, 2010. [source on file].

23.ILO Committee of Experts. Individual Direct Request concerning Worst Forms of Child Labour Convention, 1999 (No. 182) Angola (ratification: 2001) Submitted: 2011; accessed.

24.AVM Advogados. Trabalhos Proibidos ou Condicionados a Menores, AVM, [online] [cited July 17, 2013];

25.Government of Angola. Constituição da República de Angola, enacted January 21, 2010.

26.Government of Angola. Lei sobre a Criminalização das Infracções Subjacentes ao Branqueamento de Capitais, no. 3/2014, enacted February 10, 2014. [source on file].

27.Government of Angola. Anteprojecto de Código Penal, enacted 2006.

28.U.S. Embassy- Luanda. reporting, February 13, 2013.

29.UN Committee on the Rights of the Child. Consideration of Reports Submitted by States Parties under Article 44 of the Convention: Concluding Observations: Angola. Geneva; October 11, 2010. Report No. CRC/C/AGO/CO/2-4.

30.U.S. Embassy- Luanda official. Email communication to USDOL Official. April 14, 2015.

31.Government of Angola. Lei Geral do Serviço Militar, Lei No. 1/93, enacted March 26, 1993.

32.Government of Angola. Lei de Bases do Sistema de Educação, no. 13/01, enacted December 31, 2001.

33.Government of Angola. Decreto Executivo Conjunto No. 171/10 de 12 de Dezembro que Aprova a Lista de Actividades Proíbidas ou Condicionadas a Menores, enacted December 24, 2010.

34.ILO Committee of Experts. Individual Observation concerning Worst Forms of Child Labour Convention, 1999 (No. 182) Angola (ratification: 2001) Published: 2011; accessed.

35.Government of Angola. Lei sobre o Julgado de Menores, no. 9/96, enacted April 19, 1996.

36.U.S. Embassy- Luanda. reporting, December 3, 2014.

37.U.S. Embassy- Luanda. reporting, October 7, 2014.

38.UN Committee on the Rights of the Child. Consideration of Reports Submitted by States Parties under Article 44 of the Convention: Angola. Geneva; February 26, 2010. Report No. CRC/C/AGO/2-4.

39.Community of Portuguese-Speaking Countries. Declaracão de Luanda. Luanda, Ministras e os Ministros do Trabalho e dos Assuntos Sociais dos Países da Comunidade de Língua Portuguesa; March 29, 2011.

40.Community of Portuguese-Speaking Countries. Resolução sobre a Prevenção e a Eliminação da Exploração do Trabalho Infantil na CPLP. Luanda; March 29, 2011.

41.Community of Portuguese-Speaking Countries. II Reunião de Pontos Focais para Area do Trabalho Infantil da CPLP. Maputo; October 28, 2010.

42.Agência Angola Press. "Angola Apresenta Declaração em Nome da CPLP na Sessão da OIT." [online] March 20, 2014 [cited May 21, 2014];.

43.Angop. "Executivo cumpre 11 compromissos da criança." [online] october 10, 2014 [cited November 21, 2014];.

44.Governo de Angola, Ministério da Assistência e Reinserção Social (MINARS), Conselho Nacional da Criança (CNAC). Estratégia de divulgação dos 11 compromissos; 2009.

45.allAfrica. "Bié Province Government Fulfils Eleven Commitments to Children." [online] November 5, 2014 [cited].

46.United Nations Development Programme. Angola: Poverty Reduction, UNDP, [online] August 10, 2010 [cited February 20, 2013]; [source on file].

47.Ministério do Planeamento. Estratégia de combate à pobrezaGovernment of Angola,; 2005. [source on file].

48.U.S. Department of State official. E-mail communication to USDOL official. May 23, 2014.

49.allAfrica. "Inefop Trains Over 20,000 Young People." December 12, 2014 [cited 2014];.

Related Content