Child-rights watchdogs aware of paedophilia claims against PNP official

Child-rights lobbyists have urged the victim or accuser of a senior People’s National Party (PNP) official to come forward with an official complaint so they can probe scandalous allegations of paedophilia.

The claims, published on social media, have been made by a popular PNP insider.

The party functionary was identified as having used his political influence to distribute cash and other benefits in exchange for sexual favours, including from a minor.

Calls for comment from PNP General Secretary Dayton Campbell and Chairman Phillip Paulwell went unanswered on Tuesday.

The Child Protection and Family Services Agency confirmed that it was aware of the allegations.

“Checks were done at the Office of the Children’s Registry, CISOCA, and with our regional team. No report of this nature has been made,” Rochelle Dixon Gordon, publication relations and communications manager at the agency, said.

CISOCA is the Centre for Investigation of Sexual Offences and Child Abuse operated by the police.

Children’s Advocate Diahann Gordon Harrison also confirmed that she was aware of the claims.

“For that, we could need to start with the complainant (victim), who would need to come, and we would collect all the statements and all the other evidence to build a case.

“We have not yet identified a complainant, nor have we received a report,” Gordon Harrison told The Gleaner on Tuesday.

The children’s advocate said that her agency would launch an investigation once it received a live-body complainant who can spill the details.

“We would be bound by law to record the statement and probe as best as we can other aspects of the evidence which may be out there because matters of this nature, based on the allegation, which we have not confirmed, would be something that would fall within the realm of criminal law,” Gordon Harrison, a former prosecutor, explained.

romario.scott@gleanerjm.com