Claims that Surrey’s new police and crime commissioner treated a former Kingston mayor in a “racially motivated manner” are being heard in private today after this website’s reporter was banned from the room.

A sub-committee of Surrey’s police and crime panel is meeting at Kingston’s County Hall to consider claims Conservative commissioner David Munro caused ex-Kingston mayor Shiraz Mirza “personal distress” in an incident thought to relate to an overheard phone call.

The alleged incident took place after Mr Munro axed Cllr Mirza’s role as an advisor on equality and diversity, and was referred to the panel by the Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC).

UPDATE 4.47pm: A spokesman for the Surrey Police and Crime Panel said: "Surrey PCP Complaints Sub-Committee met today to discuss the complaint against the Police & Crime Commissioner and agreed to adjourn the meeting to seek clarification about the IPCC decision before taking any further action."

A spokesman for Mr Munro said the commissioner was “keen to build relationships with all of Surrey’s minority and ethnic communities himself and no longer requires a consultant to attend meetings with minority groups on his behalf”.

Read more: Surrey police and crime commissioner David Munro investigated over complaint of 'racially-motivated treatment' made by Kingston councillor Shiraz Mirza

Cllr Mirza, 64, was hired by former Surrey commissioner Kevin Hurley in 2013 to reach out to the county’s minority communities.

In his three years in the role, he helped Surrey Police fight the Islamic radicalisation of young men and assisted the force to devise methods to increase its recruitment of black and ethnic minority officers.

But councillors decided it would not be in the public interest to allow our reporter to be present during their deliberations because what they are discussing is information relating to an individual.

The complaint against Mr Munro is being heard by Conservative Reigate and Banstead councillor Dorothy Ross-Tomlin, Independent members Bryan Cross and David Fitzpatrick-Grimes, Conservative Tandridge councillor Ken Harwood and Epsom and Ewell Residents’ Association borough councillor David Reeve, who was elected as the sub-committee's chairman.

Cllr Harwood said: "This is not an investigation. We are not investigating, we are trying to seek some form of resolution."

Cllr Ross-Tomlin said: "Some of the information has been given in confidence. I think it's regrettable, but that's a matter of fact."

This website approached Surrey County Council before the hearing when it became clear, through an agenda published online, that it had already decided the substantive part of the hearing should be held in private

That was despite the legislation relied upon by the authority requiring a public interest test be carried out before the press or members of the public could be excluded.

The authority eventually relented and allowed this website to make representations in person today, which included reminding councillors that Mr Munro is an elected public official and that it is vitally important all public officials are properly held to account.

After deciding whether to uphold Cllr Mirza’s complaint the panel will also decide whether it should make public any of what it has discussed.