Leela Aheer the MLA for Chestermere-Strathmore has filed paperwork with Elections Alberta to run for re-election in the upcoming 2023 Alberta provincial election.
Aheer who was first elected in 2015 as a member of the Wildrose defeating Wildrose-turned-PC MLA Bruce McAllister. She represented the riding of Chestermere-Rocky View from 2015 to 2019.
An active supporter of the merger of the Progressive Conservatives and the Wildrose Party in 2017 she publicly endorsed Brian Jean - the then leader of the Wildrose Party - to lead the party over his challenger Jason Kenney.
Kenney won the leadership election, and appointed Aheer as Deputy Leader of the United Conservative Party.
In an interview with the Rocky View Weekly Aheer said that she was surprised at the appointment, "I would have never expected it because I campaigned very hard for Brian Jean and so it took a lot of grace for Mr. Kenney, after winning, to come to me and ask me to be beside him,” she said. “I was honestly really touched that he thought about me and felt that I was qualified and competent to be able to handle this role.”
When the UCP formed government in 2019, Premier Kenney appointed Aheer Alberta's Minister of Culture, Multiculturalism, and Status of Women.
She served in that role for over two years when Kenney shuffled her out of the role. Aheer became a vocal critic of the Premier's handling of the COVID-19 response and criticized Kenney and fellow cabinet ministers after they were photographed dining outdoors on a patio of the Federal Building apparently against the province’s health rules in early June.
Aheer is the second candidate to file paperwork with Elections Alberta to seek the nomination for the UCP in Chestermere-Strathmore, She is being challenged by Chantelle De Jonge.