John Palino has another crack at top Auckland job

John Palino will be campaigning for Auckland Mayor. Photo / Natalie Slade
John Palino will be campaigning for Auckland Mayor. Photo / Natalie Slade

Failed Auckland mayoral candidate John Palino will be running for office in the Super City again this year, according to reports.

Mr Palino confirmed to TVNZ last night that he will be campaigning for Auckland Mayor in 2016, saying he will announce it officially at his cafe - Friend of the Farmer in Takanini - on Monday at 2pm.

Mr Palino was caught up in the Luigi Wewege, Bevan Chuang, and Len Brown love triangle after the last Auckland Council election.

Mr Wewege worked on Mr Palino's mayoral campaign and was also allegedly involved with Bevan Chuang, who later revealed she was having an affair with the Auckland Mayor.

Mr Wewege left the country after allegedly helping to expose the affair.

Mr Palino was heavily defeated in the election and has since kept a relatively low profile.

He polled 108,928 votes to Mr Brown's 164,338.

Mr Palino has always denied having any advance knowledge of Mr Brown's affair with Ms Chuang.

John Slater, Mr Palino's campaign manager in 2013 and former National Party president, today said he had heard whispers from a couple of people about the businessman's latest plans "but that's all I know".

Mr Slater said he would consider helping Mr Palino this year but first he would have to be asked and consider whether he had a reasonable chance of winning the mayoralty.

Mr Palino is the third centre-right candidate to announce a tilt at the mayoralty.

Businesswoman Vic Crone has been headhunted by top National Party figures and Orakei Local Board member Mark Thomas is in the race.

One centre-right source told the Herald it was getting a bit crowded on the centre-right and making it easier for Labour MP Phil Goff, the centre-left frontrunner to replace Len Brown, who is stepping down after two terms as mayor.

Other candidates for the mayoralty include right-winger Stephen Berry, activist Penny Bright and former Green Party member David Hay.

- NZ Herald

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