Ferguson new Nationals president

FORMER Richmond MP Larry Anthony has failed in his bid to become federal president of the National Party.

Mr Anthony, who stood down as federal vice-president to seek the presidency, was beaten to the job by the party's former New South Wales president Christine Ferguson at the federal council meeting in Canberra on Sunday.

Mrs Ferguson, who lives on a property near Gundagai, will play a key role at the Nationals prepare for the next federal election.

"I'm looking forward to working closely with Warren Truss and the entire parliamentary team," she said.

Federal Nationals Leader Warren Truss said Mrs Ferguson had been a progressive NSW president with an impressive record and he looked forward to working with her.

"Under her leadership, in Tamworth in 2010, the NSW Nationals ran Australia's first-ever open primary pre-selection," he said. "She also oversaw the unprecedented 2011 state election win, which resulted in the NSW Nationals' best return in 72 years.

"And, earlier this year, Christine founded the NSW Women's Council.

"She will bring new energy and new ideas to the federal role, just as John Tanner and Larry Anthony did. Their contribution to the federal Nationals has been immeasurable and I am certain Christine is well placed to continue that work and build on it."

Meanwhile, Dexter Davies from Western Australia was elected federal vice-president and Pam Stallman from Queensland was re-elected as federal secretary.

John Sharp from NSW was re-elected as federal treasurer and Peter Langhorne from the ACT was also re-elected as chairman of the policy committee.

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