Defunct Airline’s Workers Imprison Manager

Royal Air Cambodge employees imprisoned a management representative in the company’s headquarters for hours Thursday morning as an act of protest.

Earlier in the week the defunct national airline’s staff presented management with four de­mands. They wanted a salary for this month, a place to meet and organize, assurance of new jobs, and disclosure of management’s plans for company property, 60 percent of which is state-owned.

RAC human resources manager Sar Nan said that after an hour of negotiation Thursday, the airline agreed to pay its employees full salary for April, and it will keep open the company house so employees can congregate and plan future employment.

Sar Nan said management de­nied having enough money to pay salaries. The company ac­countant said $86,000 was available. The total of the staff’s sa­la­ries comes to only $78,000.

RAC’s employees also suspect their bosses of profiting from the sale of company property that government money helped purchase. A senior staff member who asked not to be named said that eight cars have been sold so far for a total of more than $6,000.

RAC was founded in 1994 in a joint venture with Singapore Air­lines. The partnership lasted less than a year. A new partnership was formed with Malaysia Hel­i­cop­ter Services.

RAC has been out of business since October, when MHS abandoned the deal and confiscated the carrier’s planes.

RAC has never been able to find another partner. Critics within and outside the company have blamed its fall on mismanagement, administrative shifts and unreliable service.


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