EDMONTON — Daniel Smith was inaugurated as Prime Minister of Alberta in a ceremony held at the Government House in Edmonton on October 11.
The ceremony came just five days after Smith won the United Conservative Party (UCP) leadership election in the sixth ballot, defeating outgoing Prime Minister Jason Kenny’s former Finance Minister Travis Towes. .
Alberta’s lieutenant governor Salmalakani said Kenny offered to resign, which she accepted and asked Smith to form a government.
“Thank you for your willingness to serve our state and its people,” Lahani said.
“I wish you the very best of luck in your role as Prime Minister and thank you to all who serve the people of Alberta.”
The brief ceremony also included a blessing from former Chief of the Enoch Cree Nation, Billy Morin, Smith’s special adviser on Indigenous relations.
In his remarks, Smith said Alberta’s best days are yet to come.
“Alberta is truly one of the best places in the world to live, work and raise a family,” she said.
“You can come here from anywhere, from anywhere in the world. If you’re willing to work hard, you’ll succeed. The opportunities are endless.”
The new prime minister said he was committed to protecting the rights and freedoms of Alberta’s people, protecting Alberta’s jurisdictions and showing compassion to Alberta’s most vulnerable during the cost of living crisis.
“We are Albertans,” she said. “We too have hearts and compassion that match the size of mountains.”
Smith was the only one of seven UCP leadership candidates not to hold a seat in the Alberta Legislature. On October 9, she announced that she would be running for a by-election for Medicine Her Hut after UCP MLA’s Michaela Frey stepped down and encouraged Smith to run for her. Riding is a safe seat for UCP.