The owner of the Sees Global (Cambodia) Co Ltd factory in Kandal province’s Khsach Kandal district has agreed to allow the return of workers and promised to keep their seniority after more than 500 of them protested on Monday morning.
The protesters had attempted to present a petition asking for the intervention of Prime Minister Hun Sen.
The Cambodian Youth Power Union League’s Sieng Rithy said the decision came after negotiations on Monday between the factory owner, workers’ representatives and officials from the Ministry of Labour and Vocational Training.
The workers had not gathered in front of Hun Sen’s house as officials from the prime minister’s cabinet received their petition after they had protested at the factory demanding their case be resolved, he said.
“Though it is not ideal, it is a resolution acceptable to us. After the factory employer moved location, he came forward and took responsibility. He has agreed to allow the return of his workers at the new factory and keep their seniority,” Rithy said.
He said all the workers had agreed to and were satisfied with the outcome. They would return to work at the new factory in early January.
Worker Mai Chan who had been employed at the factory for eight years expressed delight that an eight-day effort by the workers had resulted in a satisfactory solution.
“This is thanks to the high-ranking officials who came to resolve the issue. I’m happy that they showed concern for us and had the matter resolved quickly,” Chan said.
On December 14, hundreds of workers at Sees Global protested when the South Korean employer closed the factory without paying them seniority allowance. He then opened a new factory near the old location.
Ministry of Labour and Vocational Training spokesman Heng Sour told The Post on Monday that the employer had said during negotiations that all the workers would be reinstated with seniority. He said he approved of the resolution and wanted talks sooner to end the dispute.
“When workers agree to a solution, the ministry will act in accordance with it,” Sour said.
The factory owner and officials from the prime minister’s cabinet who received the petition could not be reached for comment on Monday.