Bushman has big plans for Goodyear factory
Reggae star and St Thomas native Dwight 'Bushman' Duncan is calling on the Government and corporate Jamaica to assist him in transforming the abandoned Goodyear factory near Morant Bay in the parish into a trade centre.
He believes school leavers from the parish can equip themselves with skills that will enable them to make an economic contribution to the parish.
"Taxi is the main means of employment in St Thomas right now," Bushman said. "That's the only thing youth do after they leave school - get a taxi. The youth don't have much options, and a things like this can give them that."
He said that he wants to build a multipurpose facility that will boast a stadium, and several areas where youngsters can learn welding, masonry, among other skills.
"We want the youth to also have somewhere for recreational activities, as well as learning their skills," Bushman said.
In 2014, a US-based entity indicated that it wanted to build a film lot at Goodyear, but Bushman doesn't believe this will benefit the people of his parish.
"Is the people from Hollywood will benefit from dat, because dem youth here nuh equipped to deal wid dat," Bushman said. "I have a mechanic now running taxi, and mi have electricians and welders who need the qualifications so that they can work anywhere in the world and get the younger ones involved, too."
He said he has made the proposal to the relevant authorities long ago. The 21-year music veteran has taken steps to make his dream a reality through a project called Football 'N' Style, which he used to raise funds for the factory.
"Football 'N' Style is a project that we have in Kenya, England and Jamaica, where we have a football competition and a stage show in the night and all the proceedings go towards this vision," Bushman said.
Bushman told THE WEEKEND STAR that since he got the vision, he has met many roadblocks.
"The Football 'N' Style is on a pause right now because two years we lost $4 million up a York (York Oval in Seaforth) because of the bad roads; people didn't come out," Bushman said.
But even with the setbacks, the Fire Bun a Weak Heart singer said that he is determined to make this project a reality.
"If you look at the front of the yard now you see a building, and we are going to get the Hawk welding machine so that they can start from here, then we move over," Bushman said.
He said that with the help of sponsors, he hopes to restart Football 'N' Style in February 2018.