We are very sad to report the death at the age of 85 of Lord Joel Joffe, a truly remarkable, kind and generous man who had helped us as a patron of HATW for 20 years. It was an honour to know him and he will be greatly missed. As a South African lawyer he defended Nelson Mandela at the Rivonia trial in 1963, and for his trouble was expelled from the country. After arriving in the UK he worked with Oxfam for many years, ultimately as Chair.
Mark Goldring, Oxfam GB’s Chief Executive, said:
“Joel had an enormous influence on Oxfam and its staff for over 20 years. His unswerving sense of justice and commitment to ending poverty was an inspiration to all those who worked with him. He was able to use his sharp legal mind and years of experience in business to challenge authority and increase the effectiveness of our work around the world. His fearless campaigning for care of the elderly, corporate responsibility and global development shaped the world for the better yet he always maintained his trademark self-deprecating sense of humour. Our thoughts are with his family and friends.”
You can read more about Joel Joffe’s long and varied life in his obituary: http://www.oxfam.org.uk/joel-joffe