A Glasgow Labour councillor who was criticised for allegedly interfering in a charity will not be applying for a position as a party business manager.

Alistair Watson, who may face a standards probe over comments he made relating to the People’s Development Trust, has not put his name forward to be the enforcer in the Labour group.

However, Frank McAveety, who led Labour to its first council election defeat in Glasgow for nearly forty years, is expected to be re-elected unopposed as leader.

Until last week, Watson had a key role by McAveety’s side in ensuring Labour got its vote out in the city chambers.

On the eve of the council elections, a leaked recording revealed how Watson had met a key figure at the PDT, which runs the Dalmarnock Legacy Hub in the city's East End, on an employment issue relating to fellow councillor Maureen Burke.

Burke’s hours at the centre had been changed in a way that was affecting her council duties and Watson, who had no ward interest in the PDT, intervened.

At the same time, the Hub was facing difficulties with the council, as £40,000 of Integrated Grant Fund (IGF) money had been withheld and an audit of the charity’s finances was also imminent.

According to the recording, Watson said: “Just wanted a wee chat just to see if there was any scope for some latitude in terms of work-life balance, which is something we all want, in terms of Maureen, in her job but also what she does in here.”

He explained: “I’ve had umpteen conversations with many people on behalf of members. Some employers are really almost ‘get yourself to fuck, we are not in the business of allowing blah blah blah’, without actually realising that if an elected member is close to an organisation, i.e. sometimes even employed by an organisation, 99.9 per cent of the time they will be advocating on that organisation’s behalf, whether that is directly, but probably more indirectly.”

Watson continued: “And IGF is probably just a classic example about how, you know, you can release that current suspended money, as quickly as possible and get that relationship back on track.”

He added: “I certainly want to do what I can to assist a member of the current group, you know, to achieve that work-life balance, right. We are sitting on a knife-edge majority in here, in which I have to watch the numbers.”

SNP group leader Susan Aitken described the recording as an example of senior Labour councillors “routinely and casually” putting pressure on organisations..

One of her colleagues reported Watson to the Commissioner for Ethical Standards in Public Life in Scotland.

At the Glasgow council election count, Cllr Watson was reluctant to comment on the PDT controversy.

Asked what he thought about the standards complaint, he said: “No comment.”

Asked if he was ashamed about his remarks on the recording, he said “No comment.”

Asked if it was the sort of behaviour the public expects of a councillor, he said: “No comment.”

It has now emerged that Watson did not apply for the post of Labour business manager last week.

When nominations closed, party veteran Bill Butler is understood to be the only name in the frame.

An SNP source said the party in the city chambers had informed officials it would not work with Watson if he was business manager.

A Scottish Labour spokesman said: “We don’t comment on internal party matters.”

Watson said of the business manager post: “I’m not saying anything.”