GENERAL ELECTION candidate Tasmina Ahmed-Sheikh has received the support of SNP heavyweight Alex Salmond today.

The former First Minister joined the hopeful for Ochil and South Perthshire on her campaign seeking re-election.

They met with supporters at the party's election stall at Shilling Hill in Alloa on Friday, May 19, for pictures and a chat following a visit to The Gate charity in town.

Later they were heading to the Hawkhill Community Centre and were also visiting the Wee County Men's Shed.

Speaking to the Advertiser, Mr Salmond said it is very important for the party to get Ms Ahmed-Sheikh re-elected.

He added: “She is fantastic as a representative. In parliament, she's made a huge impression in two years, which is quite something.

“You can't represent a constituency in parliament unless you have a rapport with the people of the constituency and we were just up in the street there and at the foodbank and she has a tremendous rapport with local people.

“And that's what you need. You need a heart and humanity to represent a constituency such as this.”

Mr Salmond also gave his views on the Conservative landslide in the recent Local Government Election.

The Tories went from just one sole councillor in the last term to getting five representatives elected in Clackmannanshire.

He told the Advertiser: “Well, they are talking big the Tories. There's no question that they got more councillors, but they were starting from a very low base of course.

“But non the less, this big talk that they are indulging in – you know, they are going to win this and win that the next thing – what that will tend to do is bring the SNP vote out as they see the danger emerging.”

He added: “The people who talk big, like the Tories, before the game - they are the ones that end up with egg on their face.”

Ms Ahmed-Sheikh was happy to receive the backing of the SNP stalwart, whom she has known for a number of years now.

She said: “The campaign has been great, exciting, really positive. I'm very happy that I've got a proud record to stand on. Everybody has been saying how they've been following me in the campaign and following me in parliament.

“We've been at The Gate foodbank, seeing what's being done there and having lunch with with the people who'd come in.”

She added: “I've been campaigning since the election was announced and the reaction is fantastic on the doors.

“People really want someone who they know is going to stand up for them and they know all of the issues that I've been speaking about in parliament and I'm genuinely wanting to stand up and do my best for the people of the Wee County.”