The Green Party says a leadership challenge by low-ranking candidate David Hay was "a case of sour grapes" after the party decided he should not run in the next election.

Mr Hay said on Wednesday that he would challenge Greens co-leader Russel Norman for his position because the party needed an Auckland-based leader.

He is ranked 16th on Greens' list and ran as a candidate in the 2008 and 2011 elections.

A Greens spokesman said this afternoon [FRI] that Mr Hay had not made it through a vetting process to become a candidate in the 2014 election.


The Candidate Selection and Electoral Process Committee had recommended that his application to represent the party should not be accepted.

Mr Hay's decision to challenge for the leadership was "a case of sour grapes," the spokesman said.

The party executive would consider the committee's recommendation tomorrow [SAT].

Mr Hay also planned to hold a press conference outside the Greens' Auckland office tomorrow.