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Redford will remain absent from Alberta legislature

Alberta Premier Alison Redford looks up at her family as she announces her resignation in the Alberta Legislature in Edmonton March 19, 2014.

DAN RIEDLHUBER/REUTERS

Former premier Alison Redford hasn't been in the Alberta legislature since stepping down a month ago and now it appears she won't be back anytime soon.

Redford, who is still the MLA for Calgary-Elbow, has served official notice to the speaker that she will continue to be absent from sessions.

However, the reason for her excuse is confidential.

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Under Section 34 of the Legislative Assembly Act, politicians are allowed to miss sittings due to illness, injury, bereavement or official business.

Meanwhile, Redford continues to be paid in full as an MLA.

Redford did not detail how long she'll be away, but political analysts suggest her absence could be due to stress.

"It gets a bit awkward when we talk about medical leave in the situation of an elected politician, and that may sound unfair but that's a realistic way of viewing it," says Duane Bratt from Mount Royal University. "I have no doubt she applied for medical leave under stress.

"She has been under tremendous stress and public embarrassment and all of that. It's just, every option looks bad."

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