#Mots-clés : Land Grabbing Dernière mise à jour le 7 June 2019
This page has been translated with Google Translation

Last update : January 2016



History of cities – Heritage

Sector Policy Planning and construction in 2011 focused on the renovation of the road network, the delimitation of land reserves for the construction of social housing, the rehabilitation of public buildings and monuments, the management of state assets. Despite the development of this sector, it could be threatened by :

  • Lack of skilled labor
  • Weaknesses of the road network, which increases the cost of transporting materials
  • Price volatility of construction materials, which increases the cost of finished products
  • The weakness of the production and national distribution of energy
  • The risk of a national housing bubble
  • Uncertainty about changes in the cost of oil

Source (2) : Relatorio Economico Angola 2011 (CEIC)

Urban & Rural Housing

Photo of a village along the LuandaLobito road, near Sumbe Photo of a Slum close to Luanda

According to the study IBEP 2010 (1), at national level, 88% of the population experiencing a situation of poor housing : 79% against 99% in the city in the countryside. 42.50% of households live in a situation of overcrowding. Dan this study, the following criteria were studied to determine the status of the situation in housing: building materials, location, length of residence, the occupation regime, the average monthly rent, the access to drinking water, the existence of sanitation and sewage.

  • Type of housing: 80.2% of homes, apartments 1.7%, 5.3 annexes, 12.5% of shacks, 0.2% non-defined.
  • Construction time: 34% of homes were built in the last 5 years (27% in urban and 47% rural). The recent peace agreements (2002) encourage people to return to their homelands. Only 15% of homes have more than 15 years of existence. During the last 5 years, self-construction and illegal occupations have greatly expanded. This can be explained by the progressive stability that the country, which encourages people to invest in their habitat. The proportion of houses provided by the State also reached its highest value during this period (26%). Rent increased 29% while the acquisition decreased by 24% during the period of 5-10 years.
  • The quality of construction: In this study, materials and construction techniques are considered unsuitable adobe, bamboo, wattle earth and dirt floor. At the national level, 88% of homes are considered inadequate and nearly 61% are self-built. The high cost of building materials, the low purchasing power of the population and limited access to housing credit may explain this situation.
  • Capacity: The number of persons per housing unit and an approximate indicator of poverty. A unit is considered overcrowded when more than 3 people sleeping in one room. Thus, 42.5% of households experiencing a situation of overcrowding.
  • Length of residence: 47% of the population lives in its habitat during 1-5 years and only 7% live in his house for over 20 years. More than 10% of the population is less than a year in its habitat. Intense migration took place in the past decades. These data show that the population is still far from being fixed.
  • Tenure: 61% are private homes, much of which are self-built. The apartment is the type of habitat that has the largest percentage of rental (31%) and procurement (34%), highlighting a thriving real estate in urban areas.
  • Access to housing: population growth, housing costs and rents, inflation, monthly income, credit availability and the cost of housing construction are important factors influencing access to housing. Level of income, the national minimum wage is set at 9381 kwanzas (figure updated in May 2010) corresponding to 75.60 euros. The figures show significant regional disparities and a large number of provinces whose inhabitants have no minimum wage.
  • Access and Water Treatment: In Angola, the main causes of death are diseases caused by the use of unsuitable water sources. In fact, less than half of the population (42%) using a source of water suitable for drinking. Each year, 19,700 cases of child deaths caused by diarrhea due to the use of non-potable water are identified.
  • Sanitation: Sanitation of the environment includes wastewater treatment, public cleanliness, urban drainage and control of important indicators of health. Health facilities as well as the sewer system is inadequate.
  • Energy sources: 36% of the population has access to electricity. 61% of the population uses wood and coal as an energy source for cooking, 33% gas.

Source (1)  : Angola – Inquérito Integrado sobre o Bem-Estar da População – UNICEF – IBEP Final Report

Urban Housing

“Angola is a country in Central Africa where urban growth has been stronger since 1950, with an urbanization rate climbing from 5% in 1950 to nearly 50%. The urban population has grown twice as fast as the total population during these five decades. Such rhythms are however not unique on the continent.

“The capital of Angola displays a prématie overwhelming, with a population size of about 15 times higher than the second largest city in the country.

“These dynamics are typical of countries at once under-populated and crisis. All observers agree also on the fact that the dynamics of urbanization were strongly affected by the effects of the civil war (1975 – 2002) on population movements. (…) The capital served as a refuge, while other existing settlements showed a chaotic growth, sometimes brutally swollen by the influx of refugees in musseque built hastily on their peripheries, sometimes emptied by fighting. But especially locally insécurié blocked the emergence of small towns. ”(3)

Rural Housing

Essentially self-built …

Infrastructure Development

The state budget approved in South Africa in 2012 – a total of 150,000 million for the fiscal year 2012/2013- including a public investment plan for the next 10 years 600 000 million dollars to invest in new infrastructure in the improvement and maintenance of the current with two goals: to modernize the country in order to maintain its competitiveness and help create 5 million new jobs in the next 5 years, to reduce the rate unemployment affects 30% of the active population estimates of trade unions in South Africa.

Source (2) : Relatorio Economico Angola 2011 (CEIC)


Approved in early 2010, a new constitution came into force on 5 February 2010.

Right to Housing

Resolution 37/09 of the National Assembly: The Angolan State, as part of its housing policy, approved and will be applied through the program of construction of social housing, key measures to protect, respect and promote a standard of living adequate for Angolan families, ensuring access to health care, housing, education and living conditions and healthy environment, respecting the political authorities and resettlement.

The new mining code assigns to the State mining rights for prospecting and exploration, processing and marketing throughout the country. If approved, it will transform all areas containing mineral resources, including those for civil construction in restricted areas where local people will be displaced.

Forced Evictions

Angola knows many waves of forced evictions. The official reason for the evictions and demolition is the most common illegal constructions, but in many cases the administrative authorities involved in this illegality. Indeed, many of those expelled during the war were relocated by the authorities without obtaining title to or any interest in the land on which they have been relocated. This is also the case for many eviction / relocation of the last ten years, leaving people at risk of being evicted again. Another important reason is the lack of evictions of urban planning realistically adapted to the realities and needs of the poorest. In many cases, this failure is accompanied by the desire to expel the population of urban centers. (4)

Recent example of forced evictions (2012): More than 8,000 homes have been destroyed after the expulsion of their inhabitants in the “Rainbow” the city of Lubango. Part of the population was taken in a village 9 km away, but no houses to receive them, no water, no power, no roads, no schools, no public services. Official justifications of these evictions are the future land use in an avenue planned demolitions and evictions … These are far from the first. With each wave of evictions, local and national organizations representing civil society have responded with protest. Evictions and demolitions violate international laws and commitments Angolan national and international human rights. Victims of such violations are entitled to reparations. In fact, statutory standards require the prosecution of persons responsible for violations of human rights. (4)

Source (4) : “Stop forced evictions” HIC

What do social movements do to face evictions ?

Families have been evicted without prior consultation, without legal protection and without adequate alternative accommodation or an effective remedy for urban requalification projects in Luanda, Benguela and Lubango. Reference : Amnesty International & Human Rights Watch – Feb 2013 (6) Faced to Evictions, social movements promote public information, research and advocacy (Rede humanitaria Angolana)

Land Rights

The Government of Angola has sovereignty over the territory, water, … and land. All natural resources, including land is owned by the Government of Angola. (Articles 6 and 10) The Government of Angola shall respect and protect people’s property, including land owned by farmers, although the government of Angola reserves the right to expropriate property in the public interest. Source (7) : (Rede humanitaria Angolana)

The Land Act was approved in 2004 (Law 9/04) after an extensive consultation process, but there are still many gaps in the regulation and the difficulties of implementation. However, this new law is clearly an advanced level of water right to land. It embodies the following principles: the state owns the land by default, effective and efficient use of land, taxation, respect the land rights of rural communities, ownership of natural resources by the state and the reversibility and confiscation nationalization. Different types of property are required by law the right to private property (but if the state wants to build a road, it may dislodge the population because public interests outweigh private interests), the customary domain useful (it is especially because it is free and eternal unless communities decide to leave their land, then they lose that right), the useful civil law area (it is possible to use, lease but not sell it, a fee is payable to the State for a period of less than 60 years), the right to occupy precarious (it is not possible to make definitive work, the installation must be temporary and leaving the premises they must be returned in original condition). But, in fact, little is done to rural communities and urban families systematically record their land or land in order to have a better legal certainty in the future. (5)

Source (5) : Research on conflicts related to land forms and their resolution by Rede da terra

The Land Act (Lei de terras A) embodies principles of interest such as:

  • The right area: the land belongs to the state but can be exploited or used for a period not exceeding 60 years (renewable). Procedures are complex, slow and expensive and officials unfamiliar with these approaches.
  • Recognition of communities’ lands. However, the results are still very limited.

Source (2) : Relatorio Economico Angola 2011 (CEIC)

Land Grabbing

See the Website on Angola land grabbing

Vulnerable Groups

  • Homelessness
  • Joungpeople
  • Old people
  • Women

Some Interesting Practices

  • FORUM DIGITAL URBANO NO ANGONET : The Urban Forum on AngoNet is a digital space for dialogue between communities and local government in Angola about planning and development. This website is a platform for sharing information about basic services and infrastructure in municipalities throughout Angola.
  • PARTICIPATORY INCLUSIVE LAND READJUSTMENT PILOT PLANNING PROJECT IN HUAMBO PROVINCE is a interesting practice face to land grabbing. Go to the Report (UNHabitat)


Housing Market

The estimated housing deficit is close to two million units. Some 30% of the population have no access to electricity and less than 45% have access to piped water. The government has launched a strategy to supply 80% of rural and peri-urban areas with water. Infrastructure limitations restrict housing development in urban areas, and where it does happen, such limitations make development expensive. This has led to a severe shor tage of habitable housing in urban areas and widespread slum development. The country’s urban areas also lack basic land tenure laws and regulations to deal with the highly urbanised, high density reality they face. For most Angolans, auto-construcao or self-build is the predominant method of housing development. The concept of owner-managed building, a process that combines local tradespeople and family labour, is fundamental to the traditional way of building houses in Angola.

Source (7) : Rede humanitaria Angolana

Quality of Housing

Informal Housing / Slum / Homeless

There have been positive developments aimed at harnessing this self-build energy to create better settlements and prevent the development of slums. Apart from housing microfinance being provided by KixiCredito, the government has recognised the potential of self-build, making it an impor tant element in its ‘one million houses’ programme by providing serviced and legalised land to families who wish to self-build. (7)


Public – Social Housing

Public Programmes

The ‘one million houses’ programme was announced in 2008 and was envisaged to be completed by the end of 2017. The cost of these houses should be no more than US$60 000 – although this was still out of reach for most people. The public and private sector are meant to deliver around 12% of these units and cooperatives around 8%, while the majority, more than 68%, are meant to be delivered through self-help initiatives. In this context, the state also announced a Social Housing Programme to provide various degrees of subsidy for housing, that has mainly benefited civil servants and state employees. (7)


Bibliography & Sitography

  1. Angola – Inquérito Integrado sobre o Bem-Estar da População – UNICEF – IBEP Final Report
  2. Relatorio Economico Angola 2011 (CEIC)
  3. Country file Angola on the website e-Geopolis
  4. “Stop forced evictions” HIC
  5. Research on conflicts related to land forms and their resolution by Rede da terra
  6. Amnesty International & Human Rights Watch – Feb 2013
  7. Rede humanitaria Angolana


Major Problems



A report published by Human Rights Watch and the Angolan organization SOS Habitat, named “They demolished houses: Expulsions forced and insecurity of land tenure for the urban poor in Luanda ” described in detail 18 mass evictions carried out in Luanda by the Angolan government between 2002 and 2006. During these evictions, affecting a total of 20 000 people, the security forces have destroyed more than 3,000 homes, and the government has seized many cultivated land reduced in size. These large-scale evictions violated both Angolan and international laws on human rights, and made many Angolans homeless and destitute with no access to a legal remedy. Source: No Vox


  • Policy and legislation around land tenure are a major hindrance to the growth and development of Angola’s housing market. The poor often obtain land through informal processes in urban areas, but there is always the threat of forced evictions. This has happened relatively frequently in recent years as urban renewal and infrastructure have been priorities. According to a study by Development Workshop Angola, only 20% of land has been accessed through formal means and has clear title.The government needs to provide greater security of tenure for poorer households, extend the coverage of the land
    registry, and introduce simplified and rapid procedures to allow acquisition of formal tenure rights.
  • The many overlaps between the various state actors in granting property rights need to be clarified.

Major Claims


  • Development Workshop is implementing an incremental housing project in Huanbo in central Angola as well as a land tenure security program. DW is promoting the use of the Social Tenure Domain Model which uses a participatory geographical information system to record and strenthen land occupiers rights.

AMNESTY INTERNATIONAL and COHRE invite african government to

  • Publicly recognize that adequate standard of living, including adequate housing is a fundamental right;
  • Publicly commit themselves to immediately cease all forced evictions until the adoption of appropriate legislation prohibiting this practice. In the meantime, any eviction must be carried out in the most exceptional circumstances and after considering all the alternatives. In addition, evictions must be based on a judicial decision, after genuine consultation with those affected. Finally, land and adequate housing should be provided as a replacement for all those affected;
  • Give instructions to all authorities concerned to ensure that any evictions are carried out in compliance with the law and international instruments relating to human rights.

The BENGOLA DECLARATION of 2009 denounced the practice of forced evictions and contains numerous recommendations.

THE CONFERENCE “DON’T TOUCH TO MY HOUSE” in 2010 was to develop a national strategy and a strategy of integration into the global movements to prevent and combat forced evictions. Presentation of the objectives of the conference: “uma Conceber Estratégia nacional e Integração em movimentos globais of prevenção e combate às demolições e desalojamentos Forcados, criando um das espaço comum Organizações of moradores e movimentos sociais urbanos.” By International Alliance of Inhabitants. At this conference, the right to a suitable habitat are debated and fueled by the following claims:

  • the legal security of tenure and the right to remain on the official place where you live, whether rental or ownership. This security must protect people from forced evictions.
  • The availability of services, materials and public infrastructure that will be access to clean water, sanitation, electricity, health services, …
  • Affordability through the purchase or lease or construction materials, ease of credit or subsidy for the poorest. legislation must also protect tenants increases rents.
  • Safety, among others, an area sufficient protection against rain, heat, disease vectors and threats to security.
  • Accessibility (physical) for all, including the most vulnerable people such as the disabled, elderly, sick or poor.
  • Situation, housing must allow access to employment, health services, schools and other facilities not to cut transport costs on the budget of poor families. Homes must be built on sites unpolluted.
  • The adequacy culture, both as building renovation should not sacrifice the diversity and cultural identity.

Civil Society Actors

  • OMUNGA : Collective defense of human rights in Angola. E-mail:
  • REDE HUMANITARIA ANGOLANA : Angonet is a project supported by Development Workshop and funded by UNDP tant aims to increase the capacity of non-profit, civic and developement organisations working in Angola, through improved communications and information exchange. Some topics : Land urbanisation and Habitat – Decentralisation and Governance – Poverty reduction – Website Angonet
  • REDE DA TERRA OU CONSORCIO TERRAS HUILA : Organization composed of 28 national and foreign NGOs including binders associations working in the country. One of his claims is the application of the Land Law (Lei de terras). Information.
  • SOS HABITAT – ACTION SOLIDAIRE : NGO for Housing Right defense. Go to the IAI website