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The National Party has selected a woman lawyer and farmer, Amy Adams, to contest the Selwyn seat in this year's election. The selection process had been mired in controversy because a disgruntled candidate, Roger Payne, challenged it on legal points and won a High Court injunction that delayed it.
Early this month the court delivered a judgment which said the party's board was entitled to block candidates it believed were not suitable, and the process was re-started. Selwyn is a safe National seat on paper. It is a new electorate, created by boundary changes which bring in most of the old Raikaia electorate held by renegade MP Brian Connell who is quitting politics at the election.
Mrs Adams, 36, lives on a farm near Aylesbury and ran against four other candidates. "This region has a long tradition of strong leadership both at a local, regional and national level, and I hope to be able to continue that tradition," she said today.
"As a businessperson, parent and farmer I hope to appeal to a broad range of voters in our campaign to secure a very large party vote for National." Mrs Adams said she had a particular interest in economic development, communications and regulatory reviews."I bring to the campaign lots of energy and the determination to be a strong voice for Selwyn in Parliament," she said.
Mrs Adams and her husband Donald have two children and run sheep and crops on their 600 acre farm. Selwyn was once the name of the electorate held by former finance minister Ruth Richardson. When it disappeared most of it went into Raikaia, which was held by former prime minister Jenny Shipley.
When Mrs Shipley retired from politics, the Rakaia seat went to Mr Connell. He was suspended from National's caucus after making public comments about former leader Don Brash's private life, and was not reinstated when John Key took over the leadership.