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Consultant named in Agrizzi testimony denies colluding with Bosasa

Stephen Laufer says Bosasa approached him with their media relations in 2006 when he drafted a media strategy aimed at showcasing the company's activities and successes.

A screengrab of Angelo Agrizzi giving evidence at the Zondo Commission on 28 January 2019.

JOHANNESBURG - One of the consultants named by former Bosasa boss Angelo Agrizzi has denied colluding with the company to discredit some prominent journalists, saying he cut ties with the company as soon as he became aware of any underhanded activities.

In his testimony at the state capture commission of in inquiry, Agrizzi has implicated former journalists Pinky Khoabane, Stephen Laufer, and others he simply named as "Bongs" and "Ntuli”.

He claims their names are contained in his black book which contains a record of those who accepted bribes from the company.

The former Bosasa COO also claimed that the company paid consultants to discredit other journalists who exposed corruption at the company.

In a statement, media consultant Laufer says Bosasa approached him with their media relations in 2006 when he drafted a media strategy aimed at showcasing the company's activities and successes.

He says he made it clear to company executives, including Agrizzi, that he was not available for any illegitimate, illegal or underhanded work.

Laufer says he was open to all of his many journalistic contacts that Bosasa was his client.

He says his relationship with Bosasa ended when he was asked to perform unethical activities directed against specific journalists Agrizzi has named in his testimony.

The former journalist says he is available to testify before the commission.

(Edited by Shimoney Regter)

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