Two garment workers at the Winner Knitting Factory in Kandal province have been suspended for attending an International Labor Organization’s training workshop, according to officials from the ILO and Free Trade Union of Workers of the Kingdom of Cambodia.
Union officials said the two were among three from the factory who attended a weeklong workshop in Sihanoukville on collective bargaining. When the trio returned to work on Tuesday, the Hong Kong-owned factory suspended the two.
Factory management claimed the workers were suspended because they went to the workshop without permission and their absence disrupted production. The suspension would last until the two would write a letter to apology for their misbehavior, an official said.
“We allowed only one person to go to Sihanoukville because we were very busy at that time,” said Chea Ly Chhay, a factory administrator, said Thursday by telephone. “The two are team leaders and we needed them to work to oversee their teams.”
He also said the ILO invited only one representative.
However, ILO’s senior officer Nuon Rithy said the ILO invited all trade union educators who have been trained at ILO’s other training seminars. The two were among them, he said.