Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Ex-Japan workers seek redress

Ex-Japan workers seek redress

Ex-Japan workers seek redress

Sixteen Cambodians who say they were recruited for agricultural jobs in Japan and instead ended up at a food factory under reduced salaries have filed a complaint with the NGO CARAM seeking financial compensation.

The workers, some of them in Japan for more than a year, filed the complaint on Friday.

They were repatriated at the end of last month with the help of the Cambodian embassy after Japanese immigration authorities found they lacked proper papers.

They came back from Japan in groups, and the Post initially spoke to eight of them at the end of June.

At the time, the Post obtained a statement carrying the thumbprints of workers who said the factory had forced them to work more than 13 hours a day at half the salary they had been promised.

CARAM program officer Meas Sanet said the NGO was interviewing the workers and would look into the allegations.

“CARAM is investigating this case before sending it to the authorities,” she said. “Anyway, it is a rare case of worker abuse in Japan.”

The Cambodian branch of Japanese organisation Inaho Kyodoh Kumiai allegedly sent workers to a Family Foods factory in Ibaraki prefecture, where they washed vegetables.

Khouen Srey Nak, a representative for Inaho in Phnom Penh, declined to comment in detail.

“I don’t know of their complaint; I couldn’t give any information,” she said.

Most of the returnees are from Kandal and Pursat provinces.

Once in Japan, they claim, their salaries were slashed and they could not get their passports back.

“It was very bad. They cut our salary every month. They sent us to the wrong place,” one of the workers, Phat Sary, 29, said. “When the NGOs had a problem with Japanese [immigration authorities], they forced us to come back home without compensation.”

Another worker, 24-year-old Noun Rany, said: “When we trained at the NGO, we were confident, but when we worked over there, we knew we were being cheated.”

To contact the reporter on this story: Sen David at [email protected]

MOST VIEWED

  • Angkor Wat named as the top landmark for the second year

    Travel website TripAdvisor has named Cambodia’s ancient wonder Angkor Wat as the top landmark in the world for the second year running in their Travelers’ Choice Award 2018, an achievement Cambodian tourism operators expect will attract more tourists to the Kingdom. The website uses traveller

  • New US bill ‘is a violation of Cambodian independence’

    After a US congressmen introduced bipartisan legislation that will enact sanctions on Cambodian officials responsible for “undermining democracy” in the Kingdom, government officials and the ruling Cambodian People’s Party on Sunday said they regarded the potential action as the “violation of independence and sovereignty

  • Hun Sen detractors ‘will die’

    Prime Minister Hun Sen on Wednesday said those who curse or insult him would eventually die without a plot of land to bury their bodies after being killed by lightning, suffering the same fate as those who recently died in Thmar Baing district in Koh

  • Ministry’s plan for net sparks fears

    The government has ordered all domestic and international internet traffic in the Kingdom to pass through a Data Management Centre (DMC) that has been newly created by the state-owned Telecom Cambodia, in a move some have claimed is an attempt to censor government critics. Spokesman