More Disappointment After Fruitless NagaWorld Negotiations

1 min read
The NagaWorld casino in Phnom Penh. (Chorn Chanren/VOD)

Four NagaWorld union leaders walked out of the Labor Ministry on Friday afternoon again looking dejected.

It was the sixth negotiation meeting since the Phnom Penh casino workers began to strike and demonstrate in December, over what they allege was union-busting amid mass layoffs.

The four union leaders, three company representatives and ministry officials sat across from each other for two hours, again getting nowhere, said unionist Sun Srey Pich after leaving the meeting.

Asked what transpired over the two hours, Srey Pich said the workers’ representatives tried to keep calm and formal and simply made their case again. There were no heated arguments, she said.

Of more than 1,300 workers laid off last year, about 200 union members are seeking reinstatement. Workers say the layoffs disproportionately affected union members and wrongly terminated labor leaders.

They have said that the 200 workers should be rehired as others at the casino leave their jobs.

According to Srey Pich, NagaCorp said company operations had not been affected by the reduced workforce and still-employed workers missing time by striking, so it did not have reason to rehire 200 workers.

“Every meeting, we pleaded with the company to take 200 workers back, but the company still doesn’t agree,” she said, adding that she believed it was the ministry’s role to find a compromise.

Sreypich said the next meeting is set for May 4. She said she did not have any specific plans, but would continue to demand the reinstatement of 200 workers.

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