Na­tion­als’ pre-se­lec­tion vote Sun­day

Deniliquin Pastoral Times - - FRONT PAGE - By DE­LANEY COUROUPIS

The Na­tion­als’ party mem­bers vy­ing for pre­s­e­lec­tion will learn their fate this week­end, with the vote to take place in Grif­fith on Sun­day.

As of yes­ter­day there were three con­firmed can­di­dates seek­ing The Na­tion­als’ pre­s­e­lec­tion this week­end — De­niliquin party branch pres­i­dent David Lan­dini, De­niliquin party branch vice chair Perin Davey and for­mer Mur­rumbidgee Shire mayor and Mur­rumbidgee Coun­cil coun­cil­lor Austin Evans.

There is also spec­u­la­tion there will be a Grif­fith-based con­tender.

The party has opted to hold pre-se­lec­tion in the elec­torate’s far north-east cor­ner.

NSW Na­tion­als state direc­tor Nathan Quigley said Grif­fith was cho­sen due to its cen­tral­ity, and its abil­ity to ac­com­mo­date trav­el­ling party mem­bers.

‘‘Grif­fith was sug­gested due to its prox­im­ity to me­dia in Grif­fith it­self, and se­condly be­cause we have party mem­bers com­ing from the south in Moama and the north in Hill­ston,’’ he said.

‘‘Al­though it may not be cen­tral in terms of the whole elec­torate, it is cen­tral in terms of north and south.’’

The Na­tion­als’ pre­s­e­lec­tion comes af­ter NSW Pre­mier Gla­dys Bere­jik­lian con­firmed the by-elec­tion would be held on Oc­to­ber 14, the same day as Coota­mundra’s by-elec­tion to re­place Katrina Hodgkin­son.

‘‘The by-elec­tion is in about four weeks’ time, so pre-se­lec­tion is be­ing held as late as we pos­si­bly can,’’ Mr Quigley said.

‘‘We have a strong field of can­di­dates and we’re keen to see the right per­son re­turn to the seat.’’

Com­ing up against the suc­cess­ful The Na­tion­als can­di­date is Shoot­ers, Fish­ers and Farm­ers party mem­ber He­len Dal­ton.

The NSW Lib­er­als will not stand a can­di­date in the Mur­ray by-elec­tion due to a non-com­pe­ti­tion rule, ac­cord­ing to re­tir­ing lo­cal mem­ber Adrian Pic­coli.

Mr Pic­coli, who spends his last day in gov­ern­ment to­day, said a Coali­tion agree­ment pro­hibits the Lib­er­als from chal­leng­ing the The Na­tion­als’ seat.

‘‘It’s a rule and means there will def­i­nitely be no Lib­er­als can­di­date,’’ Mr Pic­coli said.

‘‘As a Coali­tion, we want to con­cen­trate all our re­sources on de­feat­ing La­bor.

‘‘Our ob­jec­tive is to keep La­bor out of gov­ern­ment, and so it would be coun­ter­pro­duc­tive to chal­lenge each other.’’

David Lan­dini.

Perin Davey.

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