'Horrified' - Hamilton mayor slams businessman for threatening female councillors
Political Figures
Political Figures

'Horrified' - Hamilton mayor slams businessman for threatening female councillors

A Hamilton businessman has been spoken to by police for writing in an email saying that three female councillors "should be taken behind the bike shed and have the living sh*t beaten out of them". 

Rod Bowman, a former Hamilton Residents and Ratepayers Association president, sent the email to more than 40 people criticising the council’s spending on climate change

Bowman told Today FM his comments were flippant, that it’s a diversion from the council’s financial woes.

He told Today FM, "I make no apologies......I cannot, and will not remain silent!

"I think that what is going down now, is no more than a diversionary measure away from Hamilton City Council’s financial issue of financial insolvency that can be solved but they do not know how, or do not want to, other than keep raiding the ratepayers wallets!"

Hamilton Mayor Paula Southgate told Tova O'Brien on Monday morning that Bowman's comments have been referred to the police.

"I was a bit horrified, to be honest," Southgate said.

"Three lovely women, two of whom are new to council, receive those threats - and of course, they don't know him so they don't know whether this is, as he described it, just a 'flippant' remark… It's not appropriate to talk to people like that. 

"Disagree with their point of view, by all means, make your political views known, by all means, but threaten, call names… not appropriate, ever."

Southgate said she won't let that type of behaviour stand, telling O'Brien enough is enough.

"My message is quite clear to people out there - you may disagree with us, that is absolutely fine, but it is not fine to threaten harm on others. It is not fine to be aggressive and angry with those people who are doing their very best to represent you at a community level.

"As mayor, I have to protect all my elected members from that kind of behaviour and I will."

Listen to the full interview between Hamilton Mayor Paula Southgate and Tova above.

You can also download the full interview on the Tova podcast, and listen on the go. 

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