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The people who want to be Alberta premier: A list of UCP leadership candidates


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By Dean Bennett in Edmonton

The United Conservative Party on Tuesday announced rules for a leadership contest to be held on Oct. 6 to choose a new leader and the province’s next premier. The race became necessary when Premier Jason Kenney announced last month that he was stepping down after he received 51.4 per cent support in a leadership review. Here is a list of the candidates who have so far declared they want his job:

Leela Aheer: UCP backbench member of the legislature for Chestermere-Strathmore. Was member of Kenney’s original cabinet as minister for culture, multiculturalism and the status of women. Removed from cabinet in 2021 after criticizing Kenney’s handling of the COVID-19 pandemic. Promises to restore trust in the party and to work to help the underprivileged.

Brian Jean: UCP backbench member for Fort McMurray-Lac La Biche. Former Wildrose party leader and co-founder of the UCP when his party merged with Kenney’s Progressive Conservatives in 2017. Lost to Kenney in first UCP leadership race. Promises to unite the party on shared grassroots ideals and principles.

Todd Loewen: Backbench member for Central Peace-Notley constituency. Sits as an Independent after being voted out of UCP caucus in 2021 for urging Kenney to resign. Promises to restore trust in party, push for greater Alberta autonomy in dealings with Ottawa.

Bill Rock: Mayor of the village of Amisk in east-central Alberta. Ran unsuccessfully for Wildrose party in 2015. Running on platform to advocate for rural Albertans on issues including crime and health care.

Rajan Sawhney: UCP legislature member representing Calgary-North East. Was member of Kenney’s cabinet, first as minister for community and social services, then in transportation. Promises to hold public inquiry into Alberta’s COVID-19 response.

Rebecca Schulz: UCP member for Calgary-Shaw. Was in cabinet as minister of children’s services. Promises to continue fight for better deal with federal government, to improve economy and to rebuild trust with Albertans and party faithful.

Danielle Smith: Former Wildrose party leader who led floor-crossing to Progressive Conservatives in 2014. Has since worked in business and as a radio talk-show host. Promises grassroots participation in party and to pursue increased Alberta independence within Confederation.

Travis Toews: UCP member representing Grande-Prairie Wapiti. Accountant and rancher. Had been finance minister since the start of the UCP government. Promises to heal rifts in party and restore trust with Albertans, while maintaining fiscal honesty.

Note: Sawhney, Schulz and Toews stepped down from cabinet to avoid potential conflict of interest during the leadership run.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published June 14, 2022.

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UCP asks Albertans to consider an Alberta Pension Plan

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News release from the United Conservative party

The Government of Alberta is starting a public engagement to discuss the possibility of creating an Alberta Pension Plan.
You might be wondering, what’s in it for you? Learn more by watching the short video below:

The government is eager to hear your views. To find more information, and participate in a survey, tap the button below.


Albertans deserve a pension plan that reflects their hard work and earnings, and it is up to Albertans to decide which pension plan that is.
-Your UCP Team



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Police arrest two more people following killing of eight-year-old girl in Alberta

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An Edmonton Police Service logo is shown at a press conference in Edmonton, Oct. 2, 2017. Police in Edmonton have charged two more people following the killing of an eight-year-old girl whose remains were found on a First Nation south of the provincial capital in April. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jason Franson


Police in Edmonton have charged two more people following the killing of an eight-year-old girl whose remains were found on a First Nation south of the provincial capital.

Officers responded on April 24 to a welfare call about the girl at an Edmonton home but were unable to locate her.

Her remains were discovered five days later on the Samson Cree Nation in Maskwacis.

Shayden Lightning, who is 21, and Raighne Stoney, who is 36, have been charged with being an accessory to murder and causing an indignity to a body.

Three others were initially charged in the case.

Police are not releasing the names of two of the accused in order to protect the identities of other children related to the victim, whose identity is under a publication ban.

A 27-year-old woman faces a charge of first-degree murder and a 25-year-old man faces charges of being an accessory to murder and causing an indignity to a body.

Edward Nievera, 67, was charged with being an accessory to murder and causing an indignity to a body.

Edmonton police Staff Sgt. Colin Leathem said in a release Friday that the recent arrests will be the last in the case and that the investigation has concluded.

“We want to thank the RCMP in Maskwacis and Wetaskiwin for their assistance with this investigation,” he said. “Needless to say, this was an exceptionally distressing investigation to work on, and they went above and beyond in helping to facilitate these final arrests and bring this file to conclusion.

“While nothing can change the horror of what occurred, we hope (the arrests) can provide some measure of justice to those who knew and loved this little girl.”

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Sept. 22, 2023.

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