General Idi Amin Dada, one of the most notorious dictators in world history, led Uganda in a reign of terror from 1971 until he was ousted in 1979. He spent the rest of his exile mostly in Saudi Arabia and was buried there upon his death in 2003.
What most people don’t realize is that Amin made a couple of trips out of Saudi Arabia during his time of exile. Once was in 1999 when he actually attempted to return to power in Uganda. While he was in Zaire, however, he was recognized and sent back to the Middle East.
The other time was much earlier in 1980 when he somehow reached Chicago in an attempt to repair his damaged image. While there, he recorded a radio ad to sell a new brand of toothpaste, Amin Dada Extra Strength Dental Care for Dentura Enterprises, at that time run by Dolly Dentura, the elusive daughter of a former CIA operative. The idea of the ad for Amin was to raise enough money to run an election campaign to be voted in as President of Uganda. Not surprisingly, this turned out to be a lie, as Amin absconded the prepaid royalties he demanded and secretly flew back to Saudi Arabia. The radio ad was shelved and never aired. Avoiding the negative publicity of allowing a vicious dictator on their payroll, the red-faced Dentura decided not to pursue Amin legally.
The ad remained in limbo and completely forgotten until I received a tip from a collector that there was an unusual radio ad with the voice of what was believed to be a former African dictator hocking toothpaste. I checked into it and discovered that this ad was indeed recorded. So here in all its amazing glory is “The Lost Radio Ad of Ugandan Dictator Idi Amin Dada”:
Learn more on the next episode of Cinematrocities. Coming soon!