The Internet Party will confirm its list of candidates, including which electorate each will stand in, on June 19.
More than 140 Internet Party members applied for candidacy, with preliminary selection meetings held in Dunedin, Christchurch, Wellington, Hamilton and Auckland, as well as online.
From that number, 22 shortlisted prospects advanced to the final Candidate Challenge in Auckland at the weekend to be evaluated by the national selection committee and Internet Party members.
Internet Party leader Laila Harré says those selected would be of the highest calibre.
“All will be exceptional candidates," Harré adds. "We’ve been incredibly impressed, not only by the talent that’s been demonstrated but also by the level of commitment and enthusiasm shown.
"We’ll have a great mix of people with experience and expertise across a range of areas that complement everything about the Internet Party.”
According to Harré, Internet Party members have played a key role in candidate selection, with a smartphone app giving them the opportunity to provide their own evaluations of candidates during the open Candidate Challenge, which was also live-streamed.
“Members’ evaluations are very important, as is feedback from the national selection committee,” she adds.
“Our promise was to select our candidates to contest the election, as list or electorate candidates, directly from our membership and to give all party member a real say in who would represent them on September 20.
"It’s been a really tough and competitive process given the amazing talent on display, so we may go with more than the 15 candidates we originally intended to select.”
The Internet Party will officially announce its candidates at an event in Wellington on Thursday, June 19.
“We’re now in the process of establishing which electorates we’ll be targeting and which candidates will stand in those electorates,” Harré adds.
“Those decisions will be made based on a number of factors, notably the ‘home’ location of each candidate and where we see strategic opportunities.
"We’ll also be assigning each candidate a specific portfolio area in which they will represent the Internet Party.”
The Internet Party’s candidates will join the combined Internet MANA list to contest the party vote.
MANA will have first, third and fourth positions on the list, while Harré will be second on the combined list, with the Internet Party also taking fifth and sixth spots. Subsequent places on the Internet MANA list will be assigned on an alternating basis between the two component parties.