A GROUP of 500 construction workers in Battambang province agreed on Monday to accept US$10,000 in compensation from a contractor working for a Chinese hydropower company, representatives said.
At a hearing Monday, Battambang provincial court ordered the Chinese national to pay the money to workers to compensate them for a Cambodian subcontractor who disappeared last week, taking with him around $14,000 in workers’ salaries.
Representative Seng Samy said the labourers had agreed to accept the amount ordered by the court, despite its being lower than the total amount owed by the contractor.
“Even though we can’t get the full amount of our wages, we are happy to accept this payment because it is better than nothing,” he said
Sok Pheap, another workers’ representative, said a Pursat-based Chinese hydropower company contracted a Chinese man named Siv Leng to construct 46 electricity poles linking Battambang town with Koh Kralor district.
He in turn subcontracted a Cambodian named Eung Chhun Leng to recruit Cambodian workers to construct the poles, but Eung Chhun Leng then cashed out the money and escaped, he said.
Siv Leng was arrested on Thursday after Eung Chhun Leng’s disappearance, but was freed on Monday after promising to compensate the workers. The police are still on the hunt for Eung Chhun Leng.