Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Sabrina workers out after months in jail

Sabrina workers out after months in jail

Sabrina workers out after months in jail

Eight unionists locked in prison in Kampong Speu province since violent clashes at the Sabrina Garment factory in May and June were released on bail yesterday, court and union officials said.

Cheum Rithy, a provincial judge, said he had decided to release the eight Free Trade Union members because they had been “detained long enough” and because the plaintiff had withdrawn demands for compensation.

“I see they have been detained for four months – that’s long enough,” he said.

The eight men still face charges of inciting violence and destroying company property at the factory, charges they deny.

They will be re-arrested if they “do something wrong”, Rithy added.

Chea Mony, FTU president, yesterday claimed credit for the unionists’ release, saying the decision had been a direct result of his urging garment workers to join opposition Cambodia National Rescue Party protests that begin in Phnom Penh tomorrow.

“Yes, of course they decided to release them immediately after I announced to all workers that they should join … to demand the court release the eight workers and increase wages to $150 per month.”

Mony added that he will continue to make demands for a wage increase through the Labor Advisory Committee.

A mother of one of the eight unionists, who didn’t want her name printed, said yesterday she was very happy when she learned her son would be released on bail.

“I met my son at the pagoda after he left the prison and came to be blessed,” she said. “I am so happy to see him free. I cried for many months because I missed him.”

The eight unionists either declined to comment or could not be reached yesterday.

Multiple clashes broke out at the factory, a supplier to sportswear giant Nike, in late May and early June.

Members of FTU allegedly clashed with members of the rival Coalition of Cambodian Apparel Workers’ Democratic Union, while police and workers also clashed, resulting in a number of injuries.

MOST VIEWED

  • Hun Sen gets Covid, shuns G20, APEC summits

    Prime Minister Hun Sen said he has tested positive for Covid-19 in Indonesia, where he is slated to attend the G20 summit in his capacity of the ASEAN chair. In a social media post addressing the Cambodian public, he said: “Before leaving Cambodia, I always

  • Hong Kong firm done buying Coke Cambodia

    Swire Coca-Cola Ltd, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Hong Kong-listed Swire Pacific Ltd, on November 25 announced that it had completed the acquisition of The Coca-Cola Co’s bottling business in Cambodia, as part of its ambitions to expand into the Southeast Asian market. Swire Coca-Cola affirmed

  • Moody’s sets outlook rating to ‘negative’ for Cambodia

    US global rating agency Moody’s Investors Service Inc on November 15 announced that it downgraded Cambodia’s outlook from “stable” to “negative” and maintained its B2 local and foreign currency issuer ratings. “The negative outlook reflects a deteriorating external position as illustrated by the severe

  • Korean first lady paves way for ill boy’s surgery

    A 14-year-old boy with congenital heart disease who was lucky enough to meet with South Korean first lady Kim Keon-hee may get the chance of a lifetime and receive surgery and treatment at Asan Medical Center in Seoul, South Korea. After seeing his plight, many

  • Hun Sen’s Covid infection caused by ‘weakened antibody’ after summit

    Prime Minister Hun Sen said exhaustion from heavy workload before and during the recent ASEAN Summit may have led to him contracting Covid-19 due to his weakened immune system, while rejecting speculations that the infection was caused by leaders of some countries who did not

  • Kingdom’s rice crowned world’s No1

    Cambodia’s Phka Rumduol jasmine variety has been crowned the World’s Best Rice for the fifth time at the TRT (The Rice Trader) World Rice Conference in Phuket, Thailand on November 17, according to leaders of the Kingdom’s apex rice industry body. Phka Rumduol