The allegedly substandard Fambul Oil is now Leo Oil as it is turned into five-gallon containers owned by Leo Oil Company to continue to deceive unwary and clueless customers.
The aim of the tricksters’ ploy is to make money and keep the company up and running at the detriment of public health.
Large quantity of Fambul Oil has been sold to the public in Leo oil containers, a move whose dangerous health impact cannot be quantified in the short-run.
Fambul Oil Company, before this time, concealed the impure and substandard oil through a crook method of transferring the polluted oil from transparent five-gallon containers to yellow ones.
The Company’s unscrupulous move deceives hundreds of customers.
Bleaching earth, a substandard chemical imported into the country is used to clean the palm oil and put on sale to the public.
Accusing fingers directly point at Mr Rajesh, the company’s production manager as the man behind the mess.
The health of Sierra Leoneans is at stake as the polluted and impure oil continues to flourish in the market.
A source says the work in the facility is risky considering the unsafe heavy-duty machines used by the employees.
The fascination machine whose function is to keep the palm oil from all impurities is not good working order.
The refinery’s temperature stands at over 290 degree, and safety gears meant for the workers are not forthcoming.
The unsafe and dangerous conditions in the refinery also add to a worsening and polarizing nature of the environmental hygiene which has a corrosive effect on the quality of the oil.
However, management over the years is bent on a sinister cover-up of the mess, and put the polluted oil on public sale to exploit unfortunate customers.
The dubious and exploitative move by Fambul Oil Company came after it was widely discovered that the oil is produced in completely unhygienic condition.
Evidence of poor hygienic is clearly seen in the poor quality of the oil by customers and a large quantity has been returned.
Sierra Leone Standards Bureau, an agency responsible for safety and quality of consumables is yet to come into action in respect of Fambul Oil’s insanitary condition.
Traders in Freetown have raised serious concerns over the poor and substandard nature of the oil and called on the attention of government.
They allege that Fambul oil is a serious threat to the health of thousands of Sierra Leoneans.
A trader at Dove Cot Mariatu Mansaray explained to Nightwatch how she disposed of Fambul Oil that would have derailed her health and family members had they consumed it.
“I bought Fambul oil once, but when I found out that it is not suitable for human consumption, the next day I decide to throw it away in order not to allow others to see it,” she said.
“The oil is tasteless and full of particles and above all, it has a colour that is quite different from the oil of other companies we buy,” Mariatu emphasised.
She also expressed her fear for those in the provinces who, she says, are clueless about the health hazards of the oil.
“They do not want to know whether Fambul Oil is good or not; they are just eating. It is too sad,” she lamented.
At the Bombay Street Market, a customer of Fambul Oil Ya Kadiatu Kamara calls on the owners of the company to improve sanitary standards of the oil.
The company before this time, she says, used to produce the oil in white five-gallon containers adding that now it produces it in yellow rubbers to deceive customers.
A businessman at Ferry Junction in Freetown, Pa Foday Samura is less satisfied with the taste of Fambul oil.
He made it clear that foreign businessmen always wrestle with allegations of producing food not fit for human consumption.
“If you check closely, one would notice that most of these producers do not consume the food they produce,” Pa Kamara claimed.
“How can you produce cooking Oil without observing standards set by Standards Bureau that is responsible to certify food producing companies in the country,” he wonders.
Pa Kamara calls on the attention of Standards Bureau to thoroughly investigate so that the level of suitability of the product could be ascertained.
Owing to the allegations confronting the company, Nightwatch made effort to reach the manager of Fambul Oil Company, but proved futile.
The saga and scandal about the health dangers of Fambul Oil has generated hot debates in the walls of parliament.
The parliamentary committee on water resources chaired by Honourable Lahai Marah representing Constituency O42 in Koinadugu District has recently warned Fambul Oil Company to adhere to standards set by Standards Bureau.
Failing to comply with the warning, Hon Marah said, would lead to the shutting down of the company.
“The Company will close down sub-standard food producing companies that are not in compliance with the Standards Bureau,” Hon Marah warned.
One of a series of investigations conducted by this medium further confirms that Fambul Oil Company battles with one of the worst environmental hygiene that badly affects the oil during manufacturing and processing stages.
The poor standards of the environment in which the oil is produced made it unfit for human consumption as it contains serious impurities.
Fambul oil Company produces oil and soap with plans to produce margarine another would-be contaminated food waiting to be consumed by the public.
The refinery and Boiler departments which have a total of 23 workers play a major part in the production of the impure and the polluted oil.
Further investigations conducted by this medium have shown a strong nexus between poor motivation of workers and poor quality of the oil.
The company workers especially blacks are less motivated evidenced in the payment of beggarly salaries compounded by ceaseless threats of dismissals.
The situation of perpetual fear and intimidation into which the workers have been plunged made it extremely difficult for the workers to do due diligence.
The managerial deficiencies the company grapples with, to a large extent, badly affect the quality of content they put out for sale.
A source has also informed this medium that 63 workers have been laid off few days back with unsatisfactory end-of-term benefits.
Out of the 63 axed workers, 2 are permanent staff while 61 are non-permanent.
It is also clear that the company has a long list of casual or non-permanent workers which management have retained for a long time at the facility.
The act indicates a blatant infraction of relevant labour laws which say the maximum retention period of a casual staff sticks at three months.
More facts in subsequent editions.