4 Nov 2019

Complaint laid against Christchurch Mayor Lianne Dalziel over Deon Swiggs investigation

11:49 am on 4 November 2019

A formal complaint has been laid against Christchurch Mayor Lianne Dalziel over her handling of allegations against former city councillor Deon Swiggs.

Christchurch mayor Lianne Dalziel speaks to reporters at the Christchurch City Council offices.

Lianne Dalziel Photo: RNZ / SIMON ROGERS

Mr Swiggs failed to get re-elected following a campaign marred by claims he sent inappropriate social media messages to people as young as 13, and insisted on hugs instead of handshakes.

A council spokesperson said it had received the complaint by local activist Wayne Hawker. The chief executive is reviewing the matter.

Christchurch city councillor  Deon Swiggs

Deon Swiggs Photo: RNZ / Eleisha Foon

Ms Dalziel is travelling to a local government conference in Perth and is unavailable for comment.

The former mayor Bob Parker said complaints of this nature were unusual.

He said the allegations against Mr Swiggs should have been resolved before the October election, as the council was first made aware of them in May.

"And the feeling is having left the examination of that complaint until the electoral papers were actually out ... he was given a rather unfair hand to deal, in other words, he couldn't clear his name."

Mr Swiggs came forward identifying himself as the person at the centre of an investigation into misconduct allegations involving interactions with young people but denied any wrongdoing.

There is still no indication from the Christchurch City Council when it will decide what happens with the code of conduct investigation into Mr Swiggs.

Get the RNZ app

for ad-free news and current affairs