Lynley Bilby

Lynley Bilby is a reporter for the Herald on Sunday.

Chuang denied 2nd term

Mayor's former mistress seeks to stay on council ethnic panel but misses shortlist.

Bevan Chuang. Photo / Natalie Slade
Bevan Chuang. Photo / Natalie Slade

A recruitment agency has blocked the former lover of embattled Auckland Mayor Len Brown from returning to a council advisory panel - sparing him further public embarrassment over her reappointment.

Despite Bevan Chuang's previous experience, Madison Recruitment has rejected a bid for a second term on the Auckland Council's Ethnic Peoples Advisory Panel.

Brown faced signing off official approval to his former mistress if she had been recommended to retain her seat. But he has dodged the awkward job as Chuang - one of 62 applicants vying for up to 13 places on the panel - did not make it past the first cut.

A philosophical Chuang said she was told by a Madison representative she hadn't made the shortlist for a position she had held for the past three years.

"I heard from the recruiter and not from the council," said Chuang.

One of the five councillors who demanded Brown's resignation after the affair said he was surprised Chuang failed to retain her position.

"It's surprising that she hasn't been shortlisted, given she was good enough not that long ago to be engaged by the mayor as his interpreter at various functions," Dick Quax said.

"It seems strange. That world of experience and the strong support she had from the board and the mayor - it all seems to have evaporated."

Last October, Brown ruled out Chuang retaining her advisory role but changed his position in February, saying he would be directed by the selection panel.

Madison Recruitment refused to comment saying it was unable to discuss details of individual applications.

A council spokesman said Brown had no involvement in the recruitment process but would act on the advice given by the selection panel.

Chuang had been a member of the Ethnic Peoples Advisory Panel since 2011.

She was the team leader of the panel's youth subcommittee and responsible for its work progress report.

The former mistress remains on the Auckland Council payroll, working to develop the New Lynn night markets.

- Herald on Sunday

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