Nicaragua's vice president says he plans to resign this week so that he can campaign for the nation's presidency next year.

In an interview with VOA TV, Jose Rizo Castellon said he plans to make an official announcement later this week that he is stepping down. He says he is complying with the nation's constitution, which stipulates he leave political office one year ahead of general elections, set for November, 2006.

Mr. Rizo Castellon is a member of the Constitutionalist Liberal Party.

Nicaragua has been in political crisis in recent weeks. Former Presidents Daniel Ortega and Arnoldo Aleman gathered political support to have President Carlos Bolanos impeached for alleged corruption. Mr. Ortega announced last week they are dropping the impeachment effort.

Mr. Ortega also plans to run for president next year.