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Slater denies political motive in Len Brown sex scandal

Wednesday 16 Oct 2013 8:19a.m.

Slater denies political motive

Cameron Slater says he would have revealed Auckland Mayor Len Brown's extramarital affair at the start of the election campaign if he could have.

Instead, he waited for an affidavit from Mr Brown's former mistress, 32-year-old failed local board candidate Bevan Chuang, before running the story on his site, whaleoil.co.nz, yesterday afternoon.

The Mayor quickly went into damage control, admitting the affair had taken place and appearing on Campbell Live last night to state his intention to remain Mayor. Only days earlier it was confirmed Mr Brown, 57, had been re-elected with a majority of more than 55,000 over his closest rival, right-leaning celebrity chef John Palino.

Although Mr Slater says Mr Brown "absolutely" should resign, appearing on Firstline this morning he denied having a political motive.

"In terms of the timing and this conspiracy theory that's running around on Twitter that I did this and the timing was all to help John Palino – if I wanted to help John Palino, wouldn't I have run this at the start of the election campaign?"

Mr Slater said he had no connection whatsoever to Mr Palino's election campaign, saying he'd only met Mr Palino "maybe twice or three times". But under further questioning from host Samantha Hayes, Mr Slater admitted his father was Mr Palino's campaign manager.

Mr Slater's blog made further claims last night following Mr Brown's appearance on Campbell Live, going into detail of the pair's sexual activities even he agreed were "gross". Mr Slater says he went into such detail because of threats he'd received on social networking site Twitter.

"It's quite astonishing, the number of people who have been defending Mayor Brown by attacking my integrity," he says. "The best way to deal with integrity issues is to publish all of the information and let the audience and let the public know whether or not I've told the story properly."

He also rejects suggestions that politicians' private lives should stay private.

"Politics isn't tiddlywinks, and unfortunately due to the nature of the narcissism involved in politics, you get ratbags; and ratbags have to be challenged and ratbags have to be knocked over if they do ratbag behaviour… If you're going to claim privacy, you don't go on nationwide TV in primetime viewing and cry a river of crocodile tears."

Despite being aligned with the National Party-aligned Communities and Residents group, Ms Chuang insists she voted for the left-leaning Mr Brown.

She was previously on the council's Ethnic Peoples Advisory Panel. Mr Slater says no one has answered the question of how she got that role in 2011, implying Mr Brown was involved. The New Zealand Herald reports although he is legally responsible for appointing the board, Mr Brown hired councillor Richard Northey to interview and hire panellists, and Mr Brown may not even have met Ms Chuang at that point.

Mr Palino says he had no knowledge of the woman, whom the Herald reports is believed to have been present at his campaign launch. He has declined to comment further.

Mr Brown has asked the media to respect his family's privacy during the matter. He told his wife about the affair last week, prior to the end of the voting period.

3 News

 
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