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Last Updated: Saturday, 28 April 2007, 17:34 GMT 18:34 UK
Election scuffle as tempers fray
Labour's Tom McCabe in an angry scuffle with an SNP activist
Labour's Tom McCabe (right) in an angry scuffle with an SNP activist
Tempers became frayed on the Scottish election trail as the campaign entered its final weekend.

In Hamilton, Labour candidate Tom McCabe was involved in a confrontation with an SNP activist as his leader Jack McConnell appealed to undecided voters.

SNP leader Alex Salmond was in Gordon where he vowed to "dump student debt".

The Liberal Democrats set out plans for cheaper access to sport and leisure facilities for children. The Tories focused on "bread and butter" issues.

'Reckless gamble'

Mr McConnell went on tour of shopping centres in East Kilbride, Hamilton, Kilmarnock and Braehead.

He urged the electorate to use its vote to back Labour rather than "gamble" with the SNP.

Speaking in Hamilton town centre, he said: "Alex Salmond thinks he has won this election.

"He thinks independence is a dead cert. He thinks victory is a given.

"But Alex Salmond is taking the people of Scotland for granted.

"I say to all of you today, prove him wrong. Stand up and say 'no' to a reckless gamble that will damage our nation."

Alex salmond
The SNP wants to see the end of the financial barriers that prevent so many talented young Scots from progressing to university
Alex Salmond

On a whistle-stop tour of the Aberdeenshire constituency he is contesting, Mr Salmond highlighted plans for students, including an end to the graduate endowment and replacing student loans with grants should they come to power.

The SNP also vowed to meet student loan repayments for Scottish-based students and give young graduates a helping hand onto the property ladder with a first home grant.

Mr Salmond said: "The SNP wants to see the end of the financial barriers that prevent so many talented young Scots from progressing to university.

"Scotland's students and graduates have a huge contribution to make to the success of our economy and it is wrong that they face huge debt if they want to study."

Young people

Scottish Liberal Democrat leader Nicol Stephen said his party would invest more than 80m in the future of young people.

He said: "I want to encourage young people to get more involved in sport and physical activity.

"We will invest a further 30m to cut the cost of access for young people to sport and leisure facilities.

"We will make access to Scotland's science centres free for under 16s to encourage more young people to learn about science and spark their imagination."

Tory leader Annabel Goldie was in her West Renfrewshire constituency.

She said her message was about her party's "positive and popular" policies on drugs, crime, affordable homes, education, health and standing up for families.




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Scuffle between Tom McCabe and activist





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