Jailed Lula to quit Brazil's election

Jailed former president Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva will withdraw from Brazil's upcoming election.
Jailed former president Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva will withdraw from Brazil's upcoming election.

Jailed former Brazilian president Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva will throw in the towel in his legal battle to run in the country's October 7 election and allow his Workers Party to announce running mate Fernando Haddad as its candidate, party sources say.

Lula had hoped the Supreme Court would agree to an appeal for more time after Brazil's top electoral court last week banned him from running due to a corruption conviction.

Two sources with knowledge of Lula's decision said Haddad will become the official candidate through an announcement outside the location in the southern city of Curitiba where Lula has been jailed since April, serving a 12-year sentence for receiving bribes.

A letter from Lula anointing Haddad will be read out to supporters who have camped outside the police building for five months to protest his jailing, which they consider a plot to keep him from returning to power.

Lula and Haddad huddled together on Monday afternoon in his jail room and began to draw up the letter, the sources said.

Lula served as president from 2003-2010 and remains by far Brazil's most popular politician.

But he is ineligible for office under Brazil's "Clean Slate" law, which prohibits candidates from running if they have convictions that have been upheld on appeal.

Jair Bolsonaro, a far-right politician running on a law-and-order anti-corruption platform, leads the polls with 24 per cent, but is in intensive care due to a near fatal stabbing at a rally last week.

Australian Associated Press