The only person with a permanent smile on his face throughout the
tortuous three days of the International Advertising Association’s Cairo
congress was Galal Zaki (pictured), secretary-general of the IAA’s
Whether explaining the latest organisational cock-up or detailing
administrative glitches, he never lost his genial demeanour. Indeed,
such is his crusading zeal for the IAA that he has written its adopted
theme song which his daughter, Rula, has recorded.
Here we give you the opening stanza:
’It’s a small world today,
Thanks to you IAA
Bringing us here together
With memories that last forever.
For over 60 years you preach, the freedom of commercial speech.
You got the world to hear our voice
You gave us the freedom of choice’.
Not quite Elton John, perhaps, but Zaki, who intersperses such cheesy
lyric writing with being head of the Intermarkets Advertising Group in
Cairo, never let a lull in the proceedings pass without a reprise of his
favourite number, often accompanying it with some highly expressive
During the closing session, Zaki even had the words distributed to every
delegate with a request that everybody should join in for a final
It was at this point that Campaign slunk out for a coffee.
Don’t give up the day job, Galal.