The United Conservative Party (UCP) candidate for the riding of Fort McMurray -Wood Buffalo is being replaced.
Zulkifl Mujahid, who defeated incumbent and current MLA Tany Yao for the right to represent the UCP in the upcoming election will no longer be permitted to run under the party banner.
On Wednesday, the UCP issued a statement saying Mr. Mujahid is named in legal matters that will be before the courts during the writ period. The UCP says removing Mujahid as a candidate will allow him to focus on addressing his legal issues.
Harvard Media News reached out to the Alberta Courts and confirmed that a private individual in Fort McMurray filed a restraining order against Mujahid on April 3. A court date is set for May 8th to address the restraining order.
Adding to the controversy circulating around Mujahid, multiple media outlets are reporting he is the defendant in a defamation lawsuit filed in February by a local business owner. The plaintiff in the defamation suit is not the same as the individual who filed the restraining order.
Mujahid did not respond to a request from Harvard Media News for comment.
The Alberta NDP say the disqualification show the UCP is a risky and chaotic choice.
“Zulkifl Mujahid is the fourth of Danielle Smith’s candidates to quit, resign, or be forced out before the election even starts,” says Sarah Hoffman, Deputy Leader of the Alberta NDP.
The UCP says that they will work with the local riding association to find a replacement for Mujahid.
The provincial election is scheduled for May 29th and Premier Smith says she intends to drop the writ of election on May 1st.