Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Cambrew’s $60K case against union begins

Cambrew’s $60K case against union begins

Cambrew employees hold placards outside the company’s property during a protest in Preah Sihanouk province last year. Photo supplied
Cambrew employees hold placards outside the company’s property during a protest in Preah Sihanouk province last year. Photo supplied

Cambrew’s $60K case against union begins

Food worker union leader Sar Mora appeared before Preah Sihanouk Provincial Court on Friday on behalf of his federation in relation to a $60,000 lawsuit filed by beverage giant Carlsberg’s partner Cambrew following a strike last August in Sihanoukville that disrupted its production.

The Cambodian Food and Service Workers Federation, which is headed by Mora, is being sued after 100 workers went on a five-day strike to protest the termination of the warehouse manager, Lim Roath, and to call for the firing of the factory’s Malaysian-Chinese manager for unfair treatment. A verdict is expected on July 21.

Cambrew is part-owned by Danish conglomerate Carlsberg and produces Angkor, Carlsberg, Bayon, Klang and Black Panther beers.

According to Mora, the company filed a civil case against the federation, citing “harassment”, rather than a case based on the Labour Law.

“I think the real cause is that Cambrew doesn’t want our independent union in their company, and from time to time they make threats to our members, activists and union leaders,” he said.

Hong Sambath, one of Mora’s lawyers, said the defence had presented evidence to the court that the case should be based on the Labour Law. Because of that, he said, he was hopeful that the court would rule in their favour.

“But in that case [related to the Labour Law] the union has no responsibility to pay damages, and they can’t afford to pay it as well,” Sambath said.

Court spokesman Yem Bunareth refused to comment on the case yesterday and Cambrew management could not be reached.

Labour advocate Moeun Tola said it was “ridiculous” that an international brand like Carlsberg would use the courts to target the trade union and impinge on their right to freedom of association.

“While it is impossible for them to pay this [damages], my bigger concern is with the courts, which are not independent, being used to undermine the freedom of association of unions,” he said

MOST VIEWED

  • Reuters: US Embassy fired 32 staff members for sharing pornography

    The United States Embassy in Phnom Penh has fired 32 non-diplomatic staff members who were allegedly caught exchanging pornographic images and video, including of minors, according to the news agency Reuters. Four sources, who spoke on condition of anonymity, told Reuters the content was shared in

  • Our 2018 guide to spending Khmer New Year in Phnom Penh

    Khmer New Year festivities are upon us. For the next few days, travellers will be making their way to their home provinces to eat, celebrate, play traditional games and visit a pagoda with offerings. If you will be staying put in Phnom Penh for the

  • US think tank warns of China's 'ulterior motives'

    A US think tank on Tuesday warned that spreading Chinese investment in the Indo-Pacific follows a pattern of leveraging geopolitical influence at the expense of the nations receiving investment, including Cambodia. The report looks at a sample of 15 Chinese port development projects, noting that the

  • More than three tonnes of ivory reportedly bound for Cambodia seized in Mozambique

    A total of 3.5 tonnes of ivory reportedly bound for Cambodia was seized by authorities in Mozambique late last week, according to the NGO Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES). CITES' information was based on a report from the