Father of triplets who died in Qatar mall blaze slams Coke for "burn on" ad campaign

Published November 10th, 2013 - 09:08 GMT
Martin Weekes, the father of three triplets who died in a fire in a Qatari mall last year, has slammed drinks mega-giant Coca Cola for a new "Burn on" ad campaign erected near the site of the blaze. (Coca Cola)
Martin Weekes, the father of three triplets who died in a fire in a Qatari mall last year, has slammed drinks mega-giant Coca Cola for a new "Burn on" ad campaign erected near the site of the blaze. (Coca Cola)

The father of the New Zealand triplets who died in a fire in a Qatari mall last year has slammed Coca-Cola for a new ad-campaign erected in the Gulf. 

Coca-Cola's advertising campaign for their new "Burn" drink was slamed by Martin Weekes -- father of two-year-old triples Lillie, Jackson and Willsher who all died in the fatal blaze last year -- after they erected a poster reading "burn on" near the site of the mall fire. 

The company has apologised and said it will remove the ad and ensured it has a more thorough review process, according to the New Zealand Herald.

Mr Weekes told the Herald he and his wife Jane were alerted to the campaign early yesterday after it had started debate amongst locals.

"It's almost beyond belief, it's disgusting really," he said. "I just don't understand how people could be either so insensitive or tasteless over something like that."

The Weekes' young children were among 19 people - including 10 other children - caught in the inferno at the Gympanzee nursery in the Villaggio shopping mall on May 28, 2012, the Herald reported.

"This is Coca-Cola, it's an organisation that understands all about the power of brand and Coca-Cola is based in Atlanta in Georgia, one of Lillie, Jackson and Willsher's friends who was killed in the fire came from Atlanta so it's even knocking down a kid in their own backyard."

The Weekes, who gave birth to twins Poppy and Parker in August, complained to Coca-Cola yesterday, but had not been given a response from the company, the Herald added.

However, the company did remove the signage late last week. In a Facebook post, Mr Weekes thanked Coca Cola for its "prompt and proactive" response, the Herald reported.


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