Sithole pull out of Zimbabwe poll

Harare - The veteran Zimbabwean opposition leader Ndabaningi Sithole yesterday said he had withdrawn from presidential elections, due at the weekend, saying the government planned to discredit him in advance of the polls. Mr Sithole's withdrawal follows claims he made on Monday that he had uncovered documents detailing a plan by the state Central Intelligence Organisation to frame him in an alleged plot to assassinate President Robert Mugabe.

The 76-year-old politician was freed on bail on charges of planning to kill Mugabe and topple his government. He is due to appear in court on 23 April after the 16-17 March elections in which he and the United Parties leader Abel Muzorewa were expected to lose to Mr Mugabe. Reuter