CLP announces candidate for Blain

The CLP has endorsed 38-year-old port worker and former teacher Nathan Barrett as their candidate for Blain but no by-election date has been set.

It has been a steep learning curve for port worker and former teacher Nathan Barrett, he says, since he was announced as the Country Liberals candidate for the seat of Blain in the Northern Territory.

The seat was previously held by former Chief Minister Terry Mills, who surprised his colleagues by announcing his resignation from politics at the end of February sittings.

Mr Mills had led the Country Liberals Party (CLP) back into government after 11 years in opposition but was rolled by current Chief Minister Adam Giles only six months later while on a trade trip to Japan.

He remained on the back bench for almost a year before announcing his departure at the end of parliamentary sittings last week.

Mr Barrett has large shoes to fill - since winning Blain in 1999 at a by-election, Mr Mills held it for almost 15 years, making him the NT's longest-serving MLA.

Considered a fairly safe CLP seat, Blain covers six suburbs in Palmerston, a town located about 20km outside Darwin.

Mr Barrett, 38, has been described as a born-and-bred territorian who has lived in Palmerston for almost 20 years and is heavily involved with local youth and community projects.

"It's been a steep learning curve," he told AAP on Monday as he prepared to go doorknocking.

When asked whether Mr Barrett would face a voter backlash due to the way Mr Mills was dumped from office, Chief Minister Adam Giles said he was well connected in the community.

"Our candidate for Blain will be an outstanding candidate and will do a great job," he said.

He will be facing off against Labor's Geoff Bahnert, a police officer who stood unsuccessfully against Mr Mills during the 2012 NT election.

The date of the by-election would be announced in the next few days, he said, but would most likely be held in April or May.

Source: AAP

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