A Taupō District councillor who used the word "n*****" in a council meeting this week is being told to stand down.
Multiple Code of Conduct complaints have been laid after councillor John Boddy used the phrase "n***** in the woodpile" in a council meeting this week when discussing rates.
"Sorry, the elephant in the room" he later said.
Mayor David Trewavas paused the meeting and asked Boddy to apologise, which he immediately did.
But Waikato Multicultural Council president Ravinder Powar said, in his view, "a simple sorry doesn't cut it in these circumstances".
"He is on the council to represent all, inclusive of their colour or creed and in my view, he should be resigning.
"He should do the honourable thing. That would be the only choice for him I think, to redeem himself."
Powar was surprised by Boddy's statement and said they were "quite unfortunate" considering the ongoing protests against racism happening internationally.
"It was a very insensitive choice of words coming from someone who ought to know better ... It's upsetting. It's derogatory. It makes a lot of people feel inferior."
He said New Zealand should have "zero tolerance" for such behaviour "especially from a person of that status".
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"After all, we live in a multicultural country."
Taupō MP Louise Upston also condemned Boddy's "unacceptable" use of "a very serious slur" but would not give her opinion on whether he should resign.
"I think the fact that he made an apology immediately was important and then it's for him and the council to then reflect on any further action that's required. But it's not for me to comment on what I think he should do."
It was the first instance of this type of behaviour from a Taupō District councillor that Upston had heard of.
Boddy would not comment when approached by NZME.
"My legal advisors have told me not to answer questions and make comments until after the event [investigation]. I am not available, so to speak."
On Tuesday, Trewavas said official complaints had been lodged from all the other councillors present at the meeting, staff and council chief executive Gareth Green.
He said legal advice was now being sought on the next steps with regard to the investigation.
Boddy was asked not to attend any council meetings or join any council-related activities until the investigation concluded.
"Councillors have asked me to ask him to go away and reflect on things," Trewavas said.