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NZ'ers eligible for Malaysian military medal

7 September 2005

New Zealanders eligible for Malaysian military medal

Prime Minister Helen Clark announced today that the Queen has given her approval for eligible New Zealanders who served in Malaya / Malaysia to wear the Pingat Jasa Malaysia (PJM) medal.

Helen Clark said the Malaysian government wishes to award the PJM medal to those who served in Malaya / Malaysia for at least 90 days, between 31 August 1957 and 31 December 1966. This also includes service in Singapore up to 9 August 1965.

"New Zealand and Malaysia enjoy a long-standing and valuable defence relationship. The Malaysian government's offer of the PJM medal is an acknowledgement of the contribution made by New Zealanders to the security of Malaysia, and the region," Helen Clark said.

Defence Minister Mark Burton said while the PJM medal is a foreign award, it would be administered by the New Zealand Defence Force. The medal recognises certain service in Malaya, Borneo, and Singapore between 1957 and 1966.

"The NZDF will act as the agent for the Malaysian government in the administration of the PJM award. However, in all possible circumstances, senior representatives from the Malaysian government will present medals in person to recipients, including the next of kin in the case of posthumous awards," Mark Burton said.

Application forms should be sent to: Medals Office, Headquarters New Zealand Defence Force, Private Bag 905, Upper Hutt, New Zealand.

Once the applications have been verified, they will be forwarded to the High Commission of Malaysia, in Wellington, which will undertake the approval and presentation of the PJM medal to eligible veterans.

Further details on the eligibility criteria, and application forms, are available from the NZ Defence Force Medals website: www.nzdf.mil.nz/medals/news/index.html

Eligibility criteria

Two categories of eligibility will be assessed by Headquarters New Zealand Defence Force for the award of the Pingat Jasa Malaysia medal.

Category One:

a. Those members of the New Zealand Armed Forces who were on the posted strength of a unit or formation, and who served in the prescribed operational area of Malaysia and Singapore, in direct support of operations in Malaysia, for 90 days or more, in the aggregate, as follows:

(1) Malaysia during the period 31 August 1957 to 31 December 1966 inclusive; and / or

(2) Singapore during the period 31 August 1957 to 9 August 1965 inclusive.

Service between 12 August 1966 and 31 December 1966 will only be aggregated as qualifying service if a member was posted for operations to Malaya or Malaysia on or before 12 August 1966.

The prescribed operational area of Malaysia and Singapore is the landmass of East Malaysia (that is: the States of Sabah and Sarawak on the Island of Borneo), the Malay Peninsula, and the Island of Singapore. The prescribed operational area also includes the sea area of Malaysia.

b. Those members of the New Zealand Armed Forces who were on the posted strength of a unit or formation outside of the prescribed operational area detailed in paragraph a. above, but who served in a secondary role in indirect support of operations in Malaysia for 180 days or more, in the aggregate, during the period 31 August 1957 to 31 December 1966 inclusive.

The secondary role is in respect of service with RNZN ships patrolling outside of the prescribed operational area whilst allocated to the Commonwealth Far East Strategic Reserve.

Service between 12 August 1966 and 31 December 1966 will only be aggregated as qualifying service if a member was serving on a RNZN ship allocated to the Commonwealth Far East Strategic Reserve on or before 12 August 1966.

c. Those New Zealand citizens who served in a civilian law enforcement capacity (police, home guard or security services) in the prescribed operational area of Malaysia only, in direct support of operations in Malaysia, for 90 days or more, in the aggregate, during the period 31 August 1957 to 31 December 1966 inclusive.

Service between 12 August 1966 and 31 December 1966 will only be aggregated as qualifying service if a person was posted for operations to Malaya or Malaysia on or before 12 August 1966.

Notes:

1. Sorties from bases outside of the operational area as prescribed at paragraph a. above do not count as qualifying service towards the award of the PJM medal. Only service by those on the posted strength of bases located in Malaysia and Singapore, and in cases where the sorties have been mounted from those bases, will be counted as qualifying service towards the award of the PJM medal. Only the first sortie from inside the prescribed operational area on any one day will be counted as qualifying service.

2. Service may be aggregated in relation to paragraphs a. and b. above. This is calculated on the basis that:

a. Service of one day in the operational area counts as one day towards qualification for the medal.
b. Service of two days in the secondary role is calculated as one day.
c. All service counts towards an aggregate of 90 days.

For example, a person who has 10 days’ service in the operational area, and 160 days’ service in the secondary role, will qualify for the medal on the basis of 10 + (160 ÷ 2) = 90.

Category Two:

Those members of the New Zealand Armed Forces, or those New Zealand citizens, who had their period of service in the operational area terminated by death, or by evacuation due to illness or injury or other disability due to that service, during the period 31 August 1957 to 31 December 1966 inclusive, and before the completion of the period of qualifying service prescribed in Category One.

General:

- There will only be one award of the medal to a person unless otherwise advised. Should the medal be lost or destroyed, it will not be replaced at public expense.

- Individual applications made directly to the Government of Malaysia for an award of the medal will be referred to Headquarters New Zealand Defence Force, for the assessment and verification of the individual’s service.

ENDS


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