Eliminating child labour in South Africa: legislation, education and non governmental organisation strategies

Master Thesis


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The interest and concern around the issue of child labour has been growing in the past. few years throughout the world. With all that has happened in South Africa, with the transition to a democratically elected government, the is a need for us to focus on all the issues affecting our country in order to make the democracy real for the person in the street. With the present government focusing on improving the conditions under which children live, the is a responsibility on everybody. The government is presently changing and introducing new legislation. The focus of the legislation is based on the constitution which is the superior law that governs the country. The government hence has an obligation to change those laws which discriminated against any of the South African children and introduce legislation which is in line with the constitution governing the country. The President has put the right of children as one of his Presidential Lead projects and part of the Reconstruction and Development Programme. The role of the Ngo and Cbos is pivotal in working towards a better society for the children of South Africa. However, the information on child labour in South Africa is very inadequate, the very few studies available have been conducted mostly in the agricultural sector. Thus, it is important that more energy be put into conducting research to establish which forms of child labour exist and in which areas it is escalating. Once this has been established it will become easier for the relevant role players to implement measures to counter the increase of child labour This study will then analyze the status of child labour in South Africa, what has been done in the past by legislation and other role players and what the government is at present doing in order for them to meet the standards set out for them in the international documents especially the United Nations Convention on the Right of the Child, bearing in mind that South Africa ratified the convention on the 16 June 1995. This would also be in line with the National Programme of Action which sets out the programme that the country has set itself towards improving the total being of the South African child.