Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Sihanoukville casino staff continue to protest

Sihanoukville casino staff continue to protest

Content image - Phnom Penh Post
Staff of GTI Entertainment Casino and Hotel in Sihanoukville protest on Tuesday night. Photo supplied

Sihanoukville casino staff continue to protest

More than 50 of the 609 Cambodian staff at GTI Entertainment Casino and Hotel in Sihanoukville gathered to protest again on Tuesday night after a failed attempt at mediation by the Ministry of Labour and Vocational Training.

The workers had previously been unhappy at a change in their terms of employment from long- to short-term contracts.

The casino subsequently sacked two employee leaders after they disputed the arrangement, leading a large group of staff members to protest.

Following their initial protests, ministry officials arrived and attempted to find a compromise.

It was then claimed that the casino and the employees had reached an agreement, but a large portion of staff members were unsatisfied. They said that on top of losing their long-term contracts, their salaries had now been reduced.

Staff representative Mom Phorn, who led his colleagues at the protest, told The Post on Wednesday: “After the solution proposed on Tuesday, the casino created a regulation ordering us to work for 12 hours at a reduced salary. This solution is totally unacceptable.

“Now, 60 to 80 Cambodian employees are holding a protest to demand the casino owner pays us our salaries on Wednesday, as we have no interest in working anymore. Whenever we get the salary, we will definitely stop working here.

“Now, there is no solution. We have been protesting without rest from 8pm on Tuesday until 2am today.

“We don’t know what solution we can achieve unless the Department of Labour comes to solve the problem again,” Phorn said.

He said the staff members were refusing to work until the issues were resolved.

“The deal made on Tuesday was unacceptable because the new terms required staff such as dealers and waiters to work for eight hours for a $192 salary.

“If they work four hours of overtime, they could earn about $400. But previously, staff were paid between $420 and $520.

“Now, all the staff have stopped working in order to protest because the salary is too low.

“When we firstly started work, the casino owner said general staff were required to work for 12 hours a day for $420 to $520 a month.

“However, our salary was decreased to $300 when the ministry officials came to solve the problem with the casino. We cannot accept such solution,” Phorn said.

Ministry of Labour and Vocational Training spokesman Heng Sour told The Post on Wednesday that the provincial department was still proceeding with the case.

“Labour laws have scope to apply all over the country, and these workers are protected by the Labour Law. We invite people to inform the department or the ministry if there is any dispute or breach of their rights,” he said.

Preah Sihanouk provincial Department of Labour director Yov Khemara claimed the department official had already solved the problem on Tuesday night, so he was unsure why the protest continued into Wednesday or what the casino employees were demanding.

“We, the Ministry of Labour and Vocational Training and the Department of Labour, are neutral parties. We are only mediators.

“Finding a compromise depends on the staff and the casino owner, we have no right decide for them.

“On the other hand, if it’s related to working conditions, if the company does not make any changes, we will conduct a special inspection,” he said.

The Post has not yet been able to locate the owner or a representative of the casino for comment.

According to its website, GTI Entertainment Casino and Hotel is the largest licensed casino in Sihanoukville.


  • 12th Cambodia int’l film festival to see return of Hollywood star

    Phnom Penh is set to come alive with the magic of cinema as the highly anticipated 12th Cambodia International Film Festival (CIFF) takes centre stage. Boasting an impressive line-up of 188 films from 23 countries, including captivating shorts, feature films, documentaries and animation, the festival promises an

  • Brawl marrs football final as Indonesian take gold in seven goal thriller

    The Indonesian men's U22 men national football team were crowned champions of the 32nd SEA Games in Cambodia, defeating Thailand 5-2 in extra time on May 16 at Olympic National Stadium in Phnom Penh. The match was marred by an ugly incident that occured in the 91

  • Bareknuckle champion wants Kun Khmer fighter

    Dave Leduc, who is the current openweight Lethwei boxing champion in Myanmar, has announced that he will travel to Cambodia this year to challenge SEA Games gold medallist Prum Samnang any time that is convenient, after their planned match later this month in Slovakia was

  • Candlelight Party disqualified from July general election

    The National Election Committee (NEC) has disqualified the Candlelight Party (CP) from contesting the upcoming general election, citing a lack of valid documentation. NEC spokesman Khorn Keomono said the CP failed to fulfil one of the three main requirements: including original documentation proving their registration

  • Thong Khon calls for orderly SEA Games closing ceremony

    Thong Khon, Minister of Tourism and permanent vice-president of the Cambodia SEA Games Organising Committee (CAMSOC), calls on all people who have received tickets to the May 17 closing ceremony of the biennial multi-sports extravaganza at the Morodok Techo National Stadium to ensure that the event

  • 1.4 billion dollar Phnom Penh-Bavet expressway due in four years

    The Government, through the Ministry of Public Works and Transport, has officially signed a public-private partnership agreement with a private company for the construction of a Phnom Penh-Bavet Expressway project that will connect the capital to Svay Rieng province. The budget for the project is