Academic journal article Journal of Sustainable Development

Evasion of Children in Ivory Coast Artisanal Mining Activities

Academic journal article Journal of Sustainable Development

Evasion of Children in Ivory Coast Artisanal Mining Activities

Article excerpt

1. Introduction

Ivory Coast located in the western part of Africa has discovered the largest gold deposit with reserves estimated at 200 tons. The British company known as Amara Mining will extract its first gold in 2017 at Angovia a region of Yahoure, a village close to Yamoussoukro the state's political capital. The capital invested in this Angovia gold mine by Amara mining company is $400 million. In addition to Angovia gold mining, this year (2013), Ivory Coast has opened the gold mining in the southwest of the country which is expected to surpass the national gold production from 13 to 16 tons per year. However the rebellion of 2002 and the post electoral crisis in Ivory Coast have had enormous consequences. This instability has made many children orphans. All these children without any proper formal background education left school to fend for themselves and due to this indulge in all kinds of negative activities. Most of them are oriented towards the artisanal gold mines without worrying about the immediate and prospective consequence because it pays for everything and supports their livelihood.

According to AGEPE on Thursday 26, 2014, the exact number of children involved in child labor in Ivory Coast is estimated to 1,994,593. These are aged 13-17. The children used in agriculture sector are 53.4%, 35.6% in service and 11% in the industry. In fact 2/3 of the children are into home job and this has a really negative impact on the education of the children. This investigation will enhance and extend the system of observation and monitoring of child labor in Ivory Coast (Yao, 2015).

The child trafficking generally leads to child labor. Minors have been working very young. According to the UNICEF statistics in 2011, at least 150 million children had been found in child labor. All those children from developing countries are aged between 5 to 14 years old (McAdam, M., 2013; Dillon et al., 2012).

As it had been reported by the International Labor Organization (I.L.O), 60% of children involved in child labor are working in the sector of agriculture. The number of children engaged in some hazardous work, such as the sex or drug trade is around 115 million (Rafferty, Y., 2013), Martens, M. (2012, Barna; S. M. 2012; World Bank Group 2012).

Some of the major forms of child labor include domestic issue, service, agriculture sector and manufacturing industries. Many children are everyday forced to work in restaurants, farms, factories, etc(Zensius, A., 2012).

The countries of West Africa and the Middle East remain the area where the trafficking of children is more recurrent. In these countries the right of children is not respected as reported the World Bank (World Bank, 2009). The United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child had found much contradiction in a country like Zimbabwe. The begging of children in Zimbabwe is accepted largely by their parents (UNICEF, 2001; Muchini, B., 2001).

Ghana, a neighboring country of Ivory Coast is one of the largest gold producers in Africa. Many children including girls had been involved in the mining activities. Even if only some few details had been talked about the active involvement of girls in the mining activities in some part of Ghana such as Akwatia and Tarkwa as reported ILO in 2007, but this phenomena remains a great concern for the authorities (ILO, 2007; Bennett, et al, 2007). The community of Ghana and some NGOs had taken the excellent initiative to visit and check frequently all the territory of of Talensi Nadbam district which is almost 912 Km2. As a result 150 children had been withdrawn from the mining sites (Hilson, G., 2008).

The political unrest in West Africa made this sub-Saharan area the prerogative location of illegal miners and the use of children as child labor is still on the rise (Hilson & McQuilken, 2014). Two years after the rebellion the World Statistic has reported in 2004 that 35% of children aged 5 to 14 in Ivory Coast were in child labor. …

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