US Energy Secretary Rick Perry (File pic)
US Energy Secretary Rick Perry (File pic)

Rick Perry set to resign as Trump's Energy Secretary over Ukraine scandal

ANI | Updated: Oct 18, 2019 05:48 IST

Washington D.C. [USA], Oct 18 (ANI): US Energy Secretary Rick Perry on Thursday (local time) notified President Donald Trump that he intends to resign from his post soon.
Quoting two administration sources familiar with the matter, Fox News reported that Perry was travelling with the president to Texas when he shared the news aboard Air Force One.
Speaking to reporters later on Thursday, Trump called Perry "outstanding" and announced, "We already have his replacement." However, the president said Perry would stay on until the end of the year.
Trump said, "It's his time. Two years is a long time," adding, "We have the man ... we're going to be putting in Rick's place."
According to sources, Perry had planned to resign at the end of the year.
It is to be noted that his resignation comes amid scrutiny over his role in the Trump administration's dealings with Ukraine.
The former Texas governor has found himself as one of the players in the middle of the controversy stemming from a whistleblower's allegation that Trump asked Ukrainian President Volodomyr Zelensky to investigate the former vice president and 2020 Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden and his son, and that the White House attempted to cover up the conversation.
On the same day, White House acting chief of staff Mick Mulvaney confirmed that the President asked Perry to work with Trump's personal lawyer, Rudy Giuliani, on policies related to Ukraine.
In an interview with the Wall Street Journal on Wednesday, Perry was reportedly quoted as saying that he spoke with Giuliani at the President's direction this spring about the alleged Ukrainian corruption.
Perry also disputed claims that he was planning to leave the administration. At the time, he wouldn't state if he was planning to stay in his role post Thanksgiving.
Perry faces a deadline on Friday (October 18) to comply with a congressional subpoena as part of the ongoing impeachment inquiry.
Meanwhile, multiple people associated with Trump inside and outside the administration told CNN that the Energy Secretary was among those engaged in efforts to change leadership at Naftogaz, Ukraine's geopolitically important state-owned oil and gas company.
During his May trip to Kiev for Zelensky's inauguration, Perry delivered a list of four candidates to replace the existing American member of Naftogaz's international supervisory board, according to a source familiar with Perry's conversations.
Perry's goal, the former official believed, was to replace the current American representative, Amos Hochstein, with someone more known and favourable in Republican circles. (ANI)