Torture in  [Togo]  [other countries]
Human Trafficking in  [Togo]  [other countries]
Street Children in  [Togo]  [other countries]
Child Prostitution in  [Togo]  [other countries]

Child Prostitution

The Commercial Sexual Exploitation of Children

In the early years of the 21st Century                                                

Togolese Republic (Togo)

This small, sub-Saharan economy is heavily dependent on both commercial and subsistence agriculture, which provides employment for 65% of the labor force. Some basic foodstuffs must still be imported. Cocoa, coffee, and cotton generate about 40% of export earnings with cotton being the most important cash crop. Togo is the world's fourth-largest producer of phosphate.

Economic growth remains marginal due to declining cotton production, underinvestment in phosphate mining, and strained relations with donors.  [The World Factbook, U.S.C.I.A. 2009]

Description: Togo

CAUTION:  The following links and accompanying text have been culled from the web to illuminate the situation in Togo.  Some of these links may lead to websites that present allegations that are unsubstantiated, misleading or even false.   No attempt has been made to validate their authenticity or to verify their content.



If you are looking for material to use in a term-paper, you are advised to scan the postings on this page and others to see which aspects of child prostitution are of particular interest to you.  You might be interested in exploring how children got started, how they survive, and how some succeed in leaving.  Perhaps your paper could focus on runaways and the abuse that led to their leaving.  Other factors of interest might be poverty, rejection, drug dependence, coercion, violence, addiction, hunger, neglect, etc.  On the other hand, you might choose to write about the manipulative and dangerous adults who control this activity.  There is a lot to the subject of Child Prostitution.  Scan other countries as well as this one.  Draw comparisons between activity in adjacent countries and/or regions.  Meanwhile, check out some of the Term-Paper resources that are available on-line.


Check out some of the Resources for Teachers attached to this website.


Suffering to succeed - Violence and abuse in schools in Togo [PDF]

Plan Togo, 2006 -- ISBN: 1-9022-8052-0 -- photography by Mark Read

[accessed 31 July 2011]

Sexually transmitted marks - One of the consequences of the proliferation of violence in Togolese schools is that there appears to be a crisis of confidence in the education system among schoolchildren themselves, certainly in the areas when Plan Togo conducted its research. None of the secondary schoolchildren we interviewed, from at least four schools, believes that the marks they receive at the end of term or end of year reflect the work they have done. There is a widespread belief that marks are the result of a series of trade-offs, mostly forced and unwanted, between pupil and teacher, which mean you pass or fail because:

• you’ve agreed to have sex with the teacher, or you’ve refused

• you’ve worked in the teacher’s fields, or you haven’t

• you’ve offered money and gifts to the teacher, or you haven’t

• you’re a boy who’s regarded by a male teacher as a competitor for a certain girl, so you’re marked down – or believe you’re marked down

Plan Togo has discovered that the expression ‘notes sexuellement transmissibles’ (sexually transmitted marks) is in widespread use in secondary schools. It’s a subtle play on words, but what it conveys is the conviction of secondary school students that success at school has very little to do with how clever or hard-working you are. And that suggests a complete lack of faith in teachers and in the education system as a whole.

Child prostitution goes unchecked in Togo

U.N. Integrated Regional Information Networks IRIN, Lome, 23 Apr 2004

[accessed 13 March 2015]

Adjo is 11 years old and tries hard to look sexy in her black mini-skirt and skin-tight blue swimsuit top.  She told IRIN over a drink in a bar filled with cigarette smoke and drug dealers lurking in the background that she likes foreign customers best. They pay better and treat her more respectfully than Togolese men.


*** ARCHIVES ***

ECPAT Global Monitoring Report on the status of action against commercial exploitation of children - TOGO [PDF]

ECPAT International, 2007

[accessed 31 July 2011]

There is a general perception among social workers and professionals working in child protection that the commercial sexual exploitation of children (CSEC) in Togo has increased considerably in recent years. It is noticeable in the streets and in several cities and villages and is reportedly controlled mainly by criminal organisations. However, no comprehensive studies have been conducted on the extent of the problem and no reliable statistics exist in this regard.

The Department of Labor’s 2004 Findings on the Worst Forms of Child Labor

U.S. Dept of Labor Bureau of International Labor Affairs, 2005

[accessed 30 December 2010]

INCIDENCE AND NATURE OF CHILD LABOR - UNICEF estimated that 66.2 percent of children ages 5 to 14 years were working in Togo in 2000. Children are found working in both urban and rural areas, particularly in family-based farming and small-scale trading. In rural areas, young children are sometimes placed in domestic work in exchange for a one-time fee of 15,000 to 20,000 CFA francs (USD 27.47 to 36.63) paid to their parents. Some children work in factories, and others work as hawkers or beggars in Lomé. Children are also employed as prostitutes in bars, restaurants and hotels.

Human Rights Reports » 2005 Country Reports on Human Rights Practices

U.S. Dept of State Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor, March 8, 2006

[accessed 30 December 2010]

TRAFFICKING IN PERSONS - There were reports that young girls were trafficked to Nigeria for prostitution.

The country was a transit point for children trafficked from Burkina Faso, Ghana, Cote d'Ivoire, and Nigeria. There were credible reports that Nigerian women and children were trafficked through the country to Europe (particularly Italy and the Netherlands) for the purpose of prostitution.

Concluding Observations of the Committee on the Rights of the Child (CRC)

UN Convention on the Rights of the Child, 28 January 2005

[accessed 30 December 2010]

[70] While noting the efforts made by the State party to prevent and combat sexual exploitation of children, the Committee is concerned that:

(a) little data is available on the extent and patterns of sexual exploitation and prostitution of children;

(b) that Existing legislation intended to protect children from sexual exploitation and prostitution is neither sufficient nor effective; and

(c) that child victims of sexual exploitation often do not receive adequate protection and/or recovery assistance.

Koranic schools in Senegal fuel child trafficking

Reuters, Dakar, Senegal, June 16, 2006

[accessed 31 July 2011]

Until recently most countries in West Africa did not have laws to penalize rape or child trafficking, although the situation was improving, Legrand said. But as one government cracked down on abuse, the problem moved to another country. A recent drive against child prostitution in Gambia had driven sex tourism to other parts of the region, such as Togo,

Committee on the Rights of the Child (CRC) - Summary Record of 1018th Meeting

UN Convention on the Rights of the Child, 1 February 2005

[accessed 31 July 2011]

[5] Ms. Boyoti-N'DadiyA (Togo) said that the Government was aware of the involvement of cartels in child prostitution. It was difficult to identify child prostitutes because there were no official brothels. Investigative work was necessary in order to identify child prostitutes and to discover who was exploiting them.

Five Years After Stockholm [PDF]

ECPAT: Fifth Report on implementation of the Agenda for Action

ECPAT International, November 2001

[accessed 13 September 2011]

[B] COUNTRY UPDATES – TOGO – The government department Direction de la Protection et Promotion de la Famille et de l’Enfant reports that Togo’s national plan on child abuse and child trafficking has been helpful in the fight against CSEC. Civil society is more sensitized; the Department receives CSEC related complaints almost daily; law enforcement officers are more aware; and more perpetrators are being prosecuted. However, full implementation of the plan is still a problem because of financial difficulties.

Child Trafficking in Togo: A Way Out

Livina Nkiruka Agwunobi,  14 September 2004

At one time this article had been archived and may possibly still be accessible [here]

[accessed 31 July 2011]

Sometimes, children are left to the lender as a pawn for a borrowed sum. They are, sometimes, left in exchange for money to a female or male agent without the parents having the chance to influence his fate after the deal. They are recruited or brought by agents in Togo and taken to Gabon or Nigeria and handed over to the employer they are assigned to. Some of them were employed to be used for prostitution.

Clamp down on child prostitution

Agence France-Presse AFP, Lome, August 01, 2005

[accessed 1 August 2011]

In Dekon, one of Lome's poor neighbourhoods, the Devissime or young girls' market as it is known in the local language Mina, is one of the city's busiest prostitution zones.

ECPAT:  CSEC in West Africa

ECPAT International Newsletters, Issue No : 34  1/March/2001

At one time this article had been archived and may possibly still be accessible [here]

[accessed 1 August 2011]

SEX TOURISM - Child sex tourism has been reported in Togo and Benin, where hoteliers are known to be recruiting young girls to satisfy their customers’ sexual needs.

CONFRONTING THE PROBLEM - Increasingly governments are willing to acknowledge that CSEC is a growing problem within their borders, as well as the region, and are making efforts to combat it. The Togolese government, for example, has developed a national action plan on child trafficking and child abuse. The Department for the Protection and Promotion of the Family and of Children has been carrying out education and sensitization campaigns against sexual exploitation and the trafficking of children for sexual purposes. In addition, it has been cooperating with governments of neighboring countries, particularly Gabon, to remedy the situation.

NATIONAL ACTION PLAN - The Stockholm Declaration and Agenda for Action on the Commercial Sexual Exploitation of Children was adopted by 122 governments in 1996. Fourteen countries from West Africa committed themselves to developing national action plans on the issue by the year 2000. So far only Togo has done so.

All material used herein reproduced under the fair use exception of 17 USC § 107 for noncommercial, nonprofit, and educational use.  PLEASE RESPECT COPYRIGHTS OF COMPONENT ARTICLES.  Cite this webpage as: Patt, Prof. Martin, "Child Prostitution - Togo",, [accessed <date>]



Torture in  [Togo]  [other countries]
Human Trafficking in  [Togo]  [other countries]
Street Children in  [Togo]  [other countries]
Child Prostitution in  [Togo]  [other countries]