Pro Merito Medal (1967)
|Pro Merito Medal (1967)|
|Awarded by the State President|
|Type||Military decoration for merit|
|Awarded for||Outstanding devotion to duty|
|Status||Discontinued in 1975|
|SADF pre-1994 & SANDF post-2002 orders of wear|
1967-1968 and 1968-1975 ribbon bars
The Pro Merito Medal of 1967, post-nominal letters PMM, is a military decoration that was instituted by the Republic of South Africa in 1967. It was awarded to other ranks of the South African Defence Force for outstanding devotion to duty and was the non-commissioned officers' version of the Southern Cross Medal of 1952 (SM) which had earlier been available to all ranks.
The South African military
The Union Defence Forces (UDF) were established in 1912 and renamed the South African Defence Force (SADF) in 1958. On 27 April 1994 it was integrated with six other independent forces into the South African National Defence Force (SANDF).
Orders, decorations and medals
In April 1952 a series of military decorations and medals was instituted, consisting of substitutes for many of the British and Commonwealth awards which had earlier been used. More decorations and medals, as well as an emblem for being mentioned in dispatches, were added between 1953 and 1970. In July 1975 the military decorations and medals of the Republic were revised. Some decorations and medals were carried over from the earlier series of 1952-1975 and new awards were instituted, followed by more between 1987 and 1991. Finally, all but one of these earlier awards were discontinued in respect of services performed on or after 27 April 2003, when a new set of nine decorations and medals was instituted to replace them.
Fount of Honour
Until 1958 the top three awards were reserved for conferment by the Queen while the rest were awarded by the Governor-General, but in 1958 the Governor-General was authorised to also award the top three. In 1961 the State President became the Fount of Honour, and in 1994 the President.
The Pro Merito Medal of 1967, post-nominal letters PMM, was instituted on 6 June 1967 and was awarded to other ranks of the South African Defence Force for outstanding devotion to duty. Prior to the institution of the Pro Merito Medal, other ranks had been eligible for the award of the Southern Cross Medal of 1952 (SM), the award of which became restricted to officers with effect from this date.
Order of wear
The position of the Pro Merito Medal of 1967 in the official order of precedence was revised three times after 1975 to accommodate the inclusion or institution of new decorations and medals, first with the integration into the South African National Defence Force on 27 April 1994, again when decorations and medals were belatedly instituted in April 1996 for the two former non-statutory forces, the Azanian People's Liberation Army and Umkhonto we Sizwe, and again when a new series of military orders, decorations and medals was instituted in South Africa on 27 April 2003. The position of the Pro Merito Medal of 1967 remained unchanged, as it was on 27 April 1994, upon the latter two occasions
- South African Defence Force until 26 April 1994
- Official SADF order of precedence:
- Official national order of precedence:
- Preceded by the Southern Cross Medal (1952) (SM).
- Succeeded by the Police Star for Outstanding Service (SOE).
- South African National Defence Force from 27 April 1994
- Official SANDF order of precedence:
- Official national order of precedence:
- Preceded by the Southern Cross Medal (1952) (SM) of the Republic of South Africa.
- Succeeded by the Police Star for Outstanding Service (SOE) of the Republic of South Africa.
The Pro Merito Medal of 1967 is a medallion struck in silver, 38 millimetres in diameter and 3 millimetres thick, depicting a disa uniflora framed in a wreath of protea flowers.
The reverse has the embossed pre-1994 South African Coat of Arms, with the decoration number impressed at the bottom of the decoration on the rim.
The original ribbon was 32 millimetres wide with dark blue, orange, white and dark blue bands, all 3¼ millimetres wide, and an orange band, 1½ millimetres wide, repeated in reverse order and separated by a white band in the centre, 3 millimetres wide. Because it was so similar in appearance to the ribbon of the Permanent Force Good Service Medal, however, it was replaced by a new ribbon, announced in Government Gazette No. 2047 dated 19 April 1968.
The new ribbon was 32 millimetres wide and sky blue, divided in the centre by five bands of orange, white, dark blue, white and orange, the dark blue band 3 millimetres wide and the other four all 1½ millimetres wide.
- Pro Merito Decoration
- Pro Merito Medal (1975)
- South African honours system
- South African military decorations
- South African military decorations order of precedence
- South African Medals Website - Post-nominal Letters (Accessed 28 April 2015)
- South African Medals Website - SA Defence Force : 1952-1975 (Accessed 30 April 2015)
- South African Medals Website - SA Defence Force : 1975-2003 (Accessed 30 April 2015)
- Suid-Afrikaanse militêre dekorasies: 1952-1975
- Suid-Afrikaanse militêre dekorasies: 1975-2003
- Republic of South Africa Government Gazette Vol. 457, no. 25213, Pretoria, 25 July 2003
- South African Medals Website - Legal aspects - Fount of Honour (Accessed 1 May 2015)
- Alexander, E.G.M., Barron, G.K.B. and Bateman, A.J. (1986). South African Orders, Decorations and Medals. Human and Rousseau.
- Republic of South Africa Government Gazette Vol. 477, no. 27376, Pretoria, 11 March 2005, OCLC 72827981
- Republic of South Africa Government Gazette no. 15093, Pretoria, 3 September 1993
- Duxbury, G.R (June 1968). "PRO MERITO MEDAL". Military History Journal. 2 1.