The social situation of the people of Angola has been near catastrophic in recent decades as a result of the 1975–2002 civil war and the country’s economic crisis with the accompanying commodity shortage. Visit AbbreviationFinder to see the definitions of AGO and acronym for Angola. Many people fled the war, the population of the city more than tripled and the entire urban infrastructure – water, sewerage, electricity, etc. – is at best dimensioned for the 1970s level. This has led to a very rapid decay for the cities. The refugee stream increased the pressure in the countryside. Because of the war, one fifth of the children in Angola were separated from their families. About 2/3 of the population lives in poverty and half do not have access to clean water.
After the end of the war, an amnesty for soldiers from the guerrilla movement UNITA was adopted. After a few years, the entire UNITA force had been demobilized; a small part of them have joined the army or the police. However, the approximately 7,000 child soldiers were not allowed to take part in the program.
Landmines are still a major problem in Angola, especially in urban areas, and many people are still being harmed and killed by landmines. Mining fields also limit the possibilities of breaking new agricultural land. Angola has the world’s largest number of amputees (at least 70,000) and about 10 percent of all amputees are children.
Health care remains substandard, even in comparison with neighboring countries. There are eight hospital beds (2005) and one doctor (2004) per 10,000 residents. Qualified personnel are available at only about half of the births. Infant mortality rates are among the highest in the world; a child of ten dies during their first year of life and half of the children under five are estimated to be malnourished. By contrast, Angola, in comparison with neighboring countries, is relatively spared from the HIV/AIDS epidemic, which can be explained by the fact that the country was isolated during the war years. In 2009, 2 percent of the population aged 15-49 were estimated to be infected.
Important reforms were implemented in 1987 through new family legislation and a strategy for gender equality was adopted in 2001. The law ensures, among other things. man and woman equality and equal rights in marriage. This has led to women becoming more educated. A major problem is the widespread corruption. According to Transparency International’s corruption index (2010), Angola was one of the world’s most corrupt countries. Real income for civil servants has fallen sharply and receiving bribes has become a survival strategy.