Wed | Sep 19, 2018

We are not sidelining Jamaicans - Hah-R-Mony

Published:Wednesday | May 23, 2018 | 12:00 AMLeon Jackson/Gleaner Writer

Western Bureau:

The Montego Bay-based entertainment and performing arts production company Hah-R-Mony has denied allegations that it has been preventing Jamaicans from gaining employment in hotels.

Ho-Chi-Min Castello, the company's chief executive officer, vehemently denied the allegations while speaking recently to members of the media during an event at Chukka Cove in St Ann.

"We go as far as to send requests to places like Edna Manley school to get dancers for our shows. We are an employer of people; we create jobs and make valuable contributions to the tourism product," said Castello. "The critics have alleged that Jamaican dancers can no longer find work in the hotels, because they are being shut out by Hah-R-Mony. This is absolutely not true."

Castello further stated that his company had an artist village, where recruits were trained at no cost to themselves: "Once there are people with talent, they can come to us. They will be trained so that they can represent our culture in the highest form," he noted. He also disclosed that half of his company's 120 employees were Jamaicans, and that throughout the Caribbean it had 650 employees.

The CEO revealed that his company had Cubans working in the industry, noting that there was nothing illegal about the practice.

"It is similar to the doctors and nurses who come from Cuba. My company pays J$20 million per year for work permits. We are going nowhere. The company has been here for nine years and we have US$10 million (J$1.26 billion) invested in this country," stated Castello.