U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley said on Friday she did not want to take the job of Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, whose tenure has been dogged by rumors of rifts with President Donald Trump.
Asked by reporters whether she wanted to be the top U.S. diplomat, Haley said: "I just don’t want to keep having this conversation. The focus is, I really want to do a good job now in what I’m doing."
"We have a secretary of state. Tillerson’s not going anywhere, so it’s really not been a topic of conversation,” she told reporters in Kinshasa at the end of a week-long trip to Africa.
If she was offered the job, she said: “I would say no.”
Tillerson, a former chief executive officer of Exxon Mobil Corp, said on Oct. 4 he had never considered resigning, but failed to address whether he had referred to Trump as a "moron," as NBC reported.
That was a few days after Trump said on Twitter that Tillerson was "wasting his time" trying to negotiate with North Korea after the secretary of state said Washington was directly communicating with Pyongyang on its nuclear and missile programs.
More recently Trump has said he has a good relationship with his secretary of state but that Tillerson could be tougher.
Haley, a Republican former governor of South Carolina, traveled to Ethiopia, South Sudan and Democratic Republic of Congo.
(Reporting by Michelle Nichols; Writing by Mohammad Zargham in Washington; Editing by Andrew Hay)