Ukrainian prime minister submits resignation after tapes

Clay Curtis
January 17, 2020

Ukrainian Prime Minister Oleksiy Honcharuk has submitted his resignation amid a scandal surrounding an audio recording where he allegedly disparages the economic knowledge and competence of both himself and President Volodymyr Zelenskiy.

Ukraine's prime minister submitted his resignation Friday, days after he was caught on tape saying the country's president knows nothing about the economy.

A voice reported to be Honcharuk's explains to his colleagues - including the finance minister - that Zelenskyy had misunderstood the strengthening of the national currency, and says the discussion with him had to be "simple", because the president did not understand how the economy worked.

"I came to the post to fulfill the president's program".

"To clear all doubts regarding my respect and trust in the president, I have written my letter of resignation and have sent it to M. Zelensky", Honcharuk wrote on his Facebook page.

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Zelenskiy's office said in a statement that the President had also said measures must be found to improve ways of protecting information to avoid future such incidents.

Reacting to the publication of the audio files, Honchurak said on Thursday in a video address: "There have been many attacks in the media and online against me personally and the government".

Earlier this week, an audio recording surfaced in which Honcharuk appeared to make disparaging comments about Zelensky's understanding of economics.

The press service of the Ukrainian government said it had no data about the authenticity of the recording and confirmed the premier's resignation.

The Rada, Ukraine's parliament, must vote on whether to accept the resignation.

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