Former ANN7 editor Rajesh Sundaram appears before the state capture commission of inquiry. Photo: Dimpho Maja/African News Agency (ANA).

Johannesburg - The Zondo Commission of Inquiry into State Capture is expected to hear more testimony from former ANN7 editor Rajesh Sundaram on Tuesday morning. 

On Monday, the commission heard how former president Jacob Zuma allegedly encouraged the now defunct ANN7 TV channel to be calculated in how it peddled propaganda for him and bashed his opponents.

Sundaram said the Guptas and Zuma had created the channel to report positively on Zuma and his faction in the ANC because South Africa’s mainstream media was hostile towards him.

Zuma, however, cautioned ANN7 editors not to be brazen in their propaganda, said Sundaram who last year released a book, Indentured: Behind the Scenes at Gupta TV.

Sundaram also told the commission how Zuma played a key role in the irregular expediting of visas for the first Indian ANN7 staff, including Sundaram.

Sundaram said he was approached by one, Laxmi Goel, to lead the setting up of the channel.

Goel, with the Guptas and Zuma’s son, Duduzane, was a shareholder of ANN7’s holding company, Infinity Media.

He said he was concerned that securing a visa and a work permit would take time, but was assured by Goel that the Guptas and their associates would bypass normal procedures with the help of Zuma’s office, which would instruct government officials to expedite the visas.

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