South Sydney City Councillor Shayne Mallard yesterday confirmed a badly-kept secret: that he is seeking Liberal Party pre-selection for the seat of Bligh in the lead-up to next year’s state election.

I want the exciting, vibrant and diverse inner-city seat of Bligh to be part of [NSW Liberal leader] John Brogden’s new Liberal government in 2003, Mallard said in a statement to his colleagues and supporters. I want Bligh and its values of tolerance, diversity and compassion to strongly influence the first Brogden Liberal government agenda.

Although Mallard will have to go through a party pre-selection process, he is currently the vice-president of the Bligh State Electoral Confer-ence for the Liberal Party and is therefore seen as a favourite to win the pre-selection. One source told the Star that Kathryn Greiner will act as his campaign manager.

Bligh has been famously held by Clover Moore as an independent since 1988. When asked about Mallard’s announcement yesterday, Moore said that she had no comment to make but confirmed she would be seeking re-election next year.

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