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Relief after factory Covid scare

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A man walks past the Y&W Garment Factory in Spean Thma commune’s Prek Chrey village in the capital’s Dangkor district on March 03, 2021. Hong Menea

Relief after factory Covid scare

More than 700 workers at Y&W Garment Factory in Spean Thma commune’s Prek Chrey village in the capital’s Dangkor district who were in contact with a Covid-19-positive worker there had tested negative, officials said on March 3.

According to the Ministry of Health’s Communicable Disease Control department (CDC), a team of researcher determined that the 48-year-old worker had tested positive on March 1. The woman had worked at the factory’s Building D8 and had contracted Covid-19 from her son who is a driver for a Chinese man who had also tested positive.

A Dangkor district official said only the workers from Building D8 have had their samples taken for testing. The factory’s administration decided to suspend work in that building for now while other buildings on the factory’s compound have been operating as normal.

Dangkor district governor Kim Nhep confirmed to The Post on March 3 that the 716 workers had tested negative.

District administration director Keng Tha said the total number of workers in the factory was around 5,000, but he did not know whether the factory would have to suspend operations totally, saying the decision rests at the national level.

Ministry of Labour and Vocational Training spokesman Heng Sour could not be reached for comment. Phnom Penh municipal labour department director Chuon Vuthy declined to comment on the matter.

Tha said Covid-19 response specialists would continue to monitor the factory and determine whether to test workers in other buildings.

“The female worker was infected with Covid-19, but we know that she contracted it from her son, who contracted it from a Covid-19-positive Chinese man,” Keng Tha said.

Separately, Kandal provincial governor Kong Sophorn has dismissed rumours that more factory workers in Ang Snuol district had contracted the virus.

He said there was no Covid-19 outbreak in any factories in the province.

“There is no report of any positive cases in factories in Ang Snuol district or other places in our province. But on March 4 a medical team will go there to test about 1,000 Chinese employees who work in the factories in the district,” he said.

Sophorn said the purpose of testing the Chinese employees was to quell these rumours and allay the fears of other workers.

The health ministry on March 3 recorded 34 Covid-19 cases linked to the February 20 community transmission, bringing the total to 374 in less than two weeks.

The 34 include two Vietnamese nationals, who stay in Svay Rieng province and are being treated there, and 15 Cambodians, nine of whom live in Preah Sihanouk province and are receiving treatment there. The rest are Chinese.

In a press release, the ministry also said four Covid-19 patients have recovered and been discharged from hospital.

As of March 3, Cambodia had recorded a total of 878 Covid-19 cases, with 396 receiving ongoing treatment.

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