PNC’s Vanessa Kissoon accuses Norton of sexual assault, gun threats; Norton says claims false and malicious

-Opposition Leader says accusation part of plot to ruin his leadership campaign

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Stalwart of the People’s National Congress Reform (PNCR) Vanessa Kissoon on Wednesday said the party’s leader, who is also the Leader of the Opposition, Aubrey Norton once threatened to sexually assault and shoot her.

Mr Norton has denied the accusation and says it is part of efforts by one of his competitors to thwart his leadership campaign. Norton is looking to retain the leadership of the PNC when its congress is held next week.

Ms Kissoon followed up a written statement with a video statement in which she held on to her accusations.

“Despite what Mr. Norton is now alleging, I have travelled in Mr. Norton’s car and under what I considered to be a threat to use  a firearm which he had in his possession and showed to me.

“Mr. Norton stopped his car, locked it, showed me his gun in his foot and asked me, ‘If I put this to your head and rape you, what would you do?’,” Kissoon said in a statement on her Facebook page.

Kissoon said she responded to Norton by saying: “I ain’t afraid of you or that s#unt and you will have to $ucking k!//  me.”

The party stalwart said Norton did not carry out his “threats or desires” but she has dealt with the “burden” of his utterances for years, only telling a few confidantes. She, however, opted to break her silence now because one Egland Gomes, who knew of the matter, publicised it on Facebook.

In a video response on his Facebook page, Norton denied the allegations. “I wish to make it very clear that at no time in my life did Sharma Solomon ever ask me to drop Vanessa Kissoon to Linden. Secondly, at no time, Vanessa Kissoon and I were alone in any vehicle heading to Linden.

“All of these claims are false and malicious,” Norton said.

He called on Solomon, another party stalwart, and Kissoon to publicly deny the allegations raised by Gomes. Norton also said these accusations were raised because he garnered the most nominations for party leader at the PNCR’s Congress slated for month end.

Kissoon, however, maintained that the incident transpired. She also called on party members to reject such behaviours from persons in positions of power.

“Mr. Norton may have missed the times we are in and the value placed in protecting women and girls. No one should be subjected to such inappropriate sexual advances and threats.

“To those men and women who have allowed politics and not what is right to influence your judgement of the situation, you have a lot to learn about abuse and sexual misconduct,” Kissoon said.

She added, “I recall how vigorously some of you went after other accused but how you let down your own.  Our party, our nation, needs more enlightenment and a nonpartisan approach to actions of this nature.”

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