Bidco clarifies on viral video of ‘adulterated cooking oil’

In the video, an unidentified lady can be seen using a razor blade to open one of the pouches, before revealing another transparent polythene bag containing what looks like water instead of cooking oil.

JINJA, UGANDA: The management of Bidco Uganda Limited (BUL), the manufactures of Fortune cooking oil has clarified on the doctored malicious video that has gone viral on TikTok tarnishing the name of their brand.

According to the Jinja-based company, the well-crafted and doctored TikTok video featured a female-like voice alleging how she purchased some pouches for one of the company products to wit Fortune Butto and claimed that they bore water packed in the polythene bags that was inserted into the pouch instead of the real oil.

In the video, an unidentified lady can be seen using a razor blade to open one of the pouches, before revealing another transparent polythene bag containing what looks like water instead of cooking oil.

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However, according to Mr Bernard Ngwabe, the head of human resources at BUL, what is so ironic is that the woman who featured in the video is neither willing to give any clue to her identity nor to the identity of her business premise; so they are not sure whether her complaint is genuine.

“Synonymous with blackmailers, the lackadaisically shared video featured the same lady ignorantly urging all recipients to share the malicious and baseless video until it reaches the rightful person but she conceals her identity as well as that of her customer who allegedly returned the product. She as well does not disclose the identity of her viewers as well as that of her shop/business enterprise which leaves a lot to be desired,” Mr Ngwabwe said.

“Because the lady proved to be a mercenary on a mission working with other evil-minded individuals, she seems very confident & certain that all other pouches that have been allegedly returned also contain water instead of oil,” he added.

On what could have been the motive for whoever is adulterating their products, Mr Ngwabe said the motive may vary from case to case, but probably some people want to take advantage and obtain money from the community by false pretence, or by claiming that they are genuine products of Bidco, yet these are counterfeits.

The Human Resource Manager added that such scenarios have happened in the past in Mayuge and Iganga districts, and both suspects in the three previous incidents were apprehended at are currently serving two-year sentences for adulterating cooking oil, while the third case was reported to Clock Tower Police in Kampala, but they were not able to make any arrest.

“All these happened in 2021, and since then, we have had a very good period of peace and have not had such cases of late. So, it is very surprising that suddenly it is reemerging.”

Mr Ngwabe appealed to the public to remain calm as they work with police to ensure that more culprits are apprehended.

“Bidco has been known for quality, is ISO certified and exports its products outside the country an implication that all our products are certified by Uganda National Bureau of Standards (UNBS),” he added.

Being a reputable company as always, Mr Ngwabe said that management has since implored anybody with a genuine complaint to report the matter to the nearest Police, Uganda National Bureau of Standards or visit their Masese-based premises to address any would-be verifiable concerns.

“As always, management is again working with government agencies to establish the motive of the perpetrators as this kind of publication threatens to malign the integrity of Bidco Uganda Limited as the company assured its reliable clients that Bidco Uganda Limited cares so much about their wellbeing making it inevitable for them to prioritize quality at a price advantage since they continue to guarantee quality service and above all, upholding the standards required of an Edible Oil company to which they were established,” he said.

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The Kiira Regional Police Spokesperson ASP James Mubi said they have since registered a formal complaint vide SD14/02/05/23 at Masese Police Station as the hunt for the culprits and their motive is being prioritized for them to answer their misdeeds.

Relatedly, Moses Katwalo, a regular consumer of Bidco products downplayed the impact of the viral video and appealed to the public not to be dissuaded by such.

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