Territory Alliance will make a contest of the Katherine election, party leader Terry Mills said today.
Visiting Katherine today, Mr Mills said the party would field a candidate for the seat as Labor struggles to find a replacement for retiring MLA Sandra Nelson.
That candidate was not announced today.
The historically conservative seat is currently held by Ms Nelson but Territory Labor has been forced to advertise trying to find a replacement candidate with 87 days to the poll.
The Country Liberal Party is hoping to win back the seat it lost by a handful of votes in 2016 with long-time local resident Jo Hersey the sole candidate to be announced so far.
Mr Mills said he was encouraged to visit Katherine by community members.
He said there was a sense Katherine has been left behind by the political system and the development seen in Darwin.
"It's important to note we've been invited here by community members who want to see another candidate in Katherine," he said.
"Darwin is of course focused upon Darwin and what we would like to do is put the local voices of local people back into the conversation.
"We have a meeting today down at Low Water Reserve and what we'll be saying to them is you have our support, speak among yourselves and come back with a candidate for us.
"Territory Alliance is about the grassroots, so it's important they choose a leader themselves who is capable and understands Katherine.
"It's a complex set of issues here so we believe only somebody from the town can really address those issues," Mr Mills said.
Labor's Michael Gunner remains in a dominant position to win a second term but Territory Alliance is growing fast, Mr Mills said.
The new party plans to field around 20 candidates Territory-wide in August's election.
Mr Mills, who is himself a former Chief Minister, says he's trying to repair a political culture in the Territory which cares only about big business.
"The Territory was established and grew on the back of small entrepreneurs and business ventures," he said.
"Now, these sorts of people are left behind.
"Katherine is about to receive a lot of funding for the military base so now they might care, but it's not care for the people in Katherine it's for Tindal.
"We need to fix the political system and allow genuine locals to participate in the political system," Mr Mills said.
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