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‘Give harsher punishment to anyone who tries to influence govt officials’

This was stated by US-based Dr Danial Kaufmann who gave expert testimony at the commission.

FILE: A video screengrab of Dr Danial Kaufmann appearing at the Zondo Commission on 19 September 2018.

JOHANNESBURG - The state capture inquiry has heard that the government needs to hand down strict penalties and jail sentences against anyone who tries to unduly influence government ministers and officials.

This was revealed by American based Dr Danial Kaufmann who has given expert testimony at the commission.

The commission is tasked with investigating allegations of undue influence by the Guptas over then-President Jacob Zuma.

Kaufmann says there needs to be harsher punishment as a deterrent.

“To make sure that there’s serious sanction for even that type of pressure and action would be an important deterrent.”

Earlier, Kaufmann said countries that have been captured need to come up with their own solutions.

He told the inquiry that the judiciary, the media, and state-owned enterprises are usually institutions that are targeted when individuals or elites capture the state.

“What are the most vulnerable institutions that have been subject to capture? And why and what are the forces behind it? In terms of the forces behind it, one has to look at the incentives. What were the incentives for those who were trying, successfully or not, to capture the state?”

(Edited by Thapelo Lekabe)