National Election Committee (NEC) staff and contractors will be required to work seven days a week for the next five months in order to register almost 10 million voters ahead of elections, the NEC announced late last week.
NEC spokesman Hang Puthea said the late delivery of computers needed for registration – provided by the European Union and delivered by the United Nations Office for Project Services (UNOPS) – in part contributed to the long working hours.
“The late delivery of equipment is also a factor that means we have to [add] more working hours,” he said.
A total of 323 NEC staff and 7,000 contractors will work Monday through Sunday, from 7am until 5:30 pm, between now and December 31, he said.
Jon Lidén, the director of communications at UNOPS headquarters in Denmark, denied the delivery of equipment was late.
“UNOPS believe we have conducted the procurement process within the stipulated timelines and as efficiently as possible given the constraints of the process and product choices made by the NEC,” he said in an email.
Whether or not the new hours will include Pchum Ben remains up in the air, according to Puthea, who said the NEC had not yet reached a decision on an opposition party request asking that staffers to work through the holiday to register returning migrant workers.