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Mayoral candidate withdrawing from race

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A candidate for mayor of Grande Prairie has discovered he’s not eligible to run. Rony Rajput lives just outside of city limits in Whispering Ridge, but owns a business in the city. He says his candidacy was an honest mistake.

“As soon as we found out, we started working on withdrawing my name, which we already did, and that’s all we can do right now.”

Since Rajput withdrew more than 24 hours after the nomination day deadline, his name will still be on the ballot when residents go to vote on October 16th. He’s technically still a candidate, and can receive votes.

“They were unable to remove my name from the ballot on time, so you might see my name on the ballot but do not vote for me this time.”

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Rajput’s family owns the Town Centre liquor store downtown. He can’t say yet whether he will consider running in a future election.

“[I’ve worked] in the city for the last 14 years and we’ve seen a lot, we’ve heard a lot, so we just wanted to go and do the right things ourselves.”

Returning officer Terri Williams explains that in the event that Rajput is elected, someone would have to contest it in order for him to be declared ineligible. In order to be nominated, the only requirements are that candidates submit the appropriate form and pay a nomination deposit.

Incumbent Bill Given, Dick Baillie and Theodore Nikiforuk are all still campaigning to lead Grande Prairie city council.

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