Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Shuttered schools, factories



Shuttered schools, factories

Students ride a motorbike past a closed school in Phnom Penh
Students ride a motorbike past a closed school in Phnom Penh. VIREAK MAI

Shuttered schools, factories

With only about 10 per cent of its 1,000-person workforce at their stations by 8am yesterday, management at Hoyear (Cambodia) Garment Ltd cut its losses and announced that the factory would close for the next two days.

In his time working as Hoyear’s human resources manager, Em Socheat had never seen such a large absence of employees, he said. But then, clashes between military police and pro-opposition demonstrators that left one dead and several severely injured the previous day put Phnom Penh in a state of alert rarely seen in recent years.

“This is the first time that they’re [so] afraid of demonstrations,” Socheat said of the three-day ongoing demonstration in Freedom Park organised by the Cambodia National Rescue Party. “[It’s] because of the political situation in Cambodia.”

Thousands across the capital opted out of work and school yesterday as calls for caution – including an emergency notice from the United States embassy advising US citizens to stay off the street – reverberated around the city.

Cambodian public schools don’t begin until October, but at least a dozen private schools already in session in Phnom Penh told the Post they were disrupted by the demonstration, which started on Sunday.

“The parents [of the students] who didn’t come say they are afraid to send their kids,” said Selinna Peng, vice-principal of Maple Technology Enhanced Learning, where a significant number of students did not attend class yesterday.

Peng added that she wasn’t sure her school would be open today.

At the University of Health Sciences across from Freedom Park, exams were delayed, and at English Language Training Institute up to 30 per cent of students failed to attend class.

“We also worry about roadblocks and that it would be difficult for the students who ride the school bus,” said Men Khemrin, ELT’s administrative manager.

In addition to Hoyear Garments, Kin Tai Garment Co Ltd and Tae Young (Cambodia) Co Ltd shut their doors yesterday due to sparse attendance, Yang Sophorn, president of Cambodian Alliance of Trade Unions, said. But not all workers who stayed home did so out of fear, Sophorn said.

About 500 employees at Kin Tai came into work and staged a walkout yesterday, marching from the Meanchey district factory to Freedom Park, said Chheang Thida, who walked out with co-workers.

“Other workers and I boycotted work to join the demonstration, help workers earn higher wages [as the CNRP promised] and improve the lives of all Cambodian people,” Thida said.

MOST VIEWED

  • Ministry mulls ASEAN+3 travel bubble

    The Ministry of Tourism plans to launch a travel bubble allowing transit between Cambodia and 12 other regional countries in a bid to resuscitate the tourism sector amid crushing impact of the ongoing spread of Covid-19, Ministry of Tourism spokesman Top Sopheak told The Post on

  • Courts’ decisions now published as reference source

    The Ministry of Justice has published 44 verdicts from civil litigation cases which can be used as models for court precedents and for study by the public and those who work in pertinent fields. Publication of the verdicts on December 31 came as the result of joint

  • ‘Kingdom one of safest to visit in Covid-19 era’

    The Ministry of Tourism on January 12 proclaimed Cambodia as one of the safest countries to visit in light of the Kingdom having been ranked number one in the world by the Senegalese Economic Prospective Bureau for its success in handling the Covid-19 pandemic. In rankings

  • Quarantine site in north Phnom Penh inaugurated

    A four-building quarantine centre in Phnom Penh’s Prek Pnov district was formally inaugurated on January 6. The centre can house up to 500 people, according to Phnom Penh municipal governor Khuong Sreng. At the inauguration ceremony, Sreng said the municipal hall had cooperated with the Ministry

  • China firm to develop Mondulkiri airport

    Tourism to the Kingdom’s northeast corridor could experience a remarkable metamorphosis after the government decided in principle of a Chinese company to study and develop a proposal to build a regional-level airport in Mondulkiri province, according to industry insiders. The Council of Ministers said

  • More than 5K workers rush from Thailand amid outbreak

    Following the recent outbreak of Covid-19 in Thailand’s Samut Sakhon province, Cambodian migrants working in Thailand were gripped by worry over the situation and many rushed to return to their homeland. Over the past 10 days, more than 5,000 migrant workers have returned from Thailand through