Sunday, June 7, 2009

CONGRATULATIONS, AND ARE SENIOR OFFICERS OF THE ARMED FORCES NOT A DESERVING LOT?

I wish to take this opportunity to convey my heartiest congratulations to the following retired army officers who have been conferred with awards by the SPB Yang DiPertuan Agong, on the occasion of his birthday on June 6th 2009.

Former Chief of Army, Jen Dato Seri Mohd Shahrom bin Dato Hj. Nordin (Retired) conferred the Panglima Setia Makhota (PSM) which carries the honorific title of Tan Sri.

Former Commandant Armed Forces Defence College, Mej Jen Lai Chung Wah (Retired) conferred the Panglima Jasa Negara (PJN) which carries the honorific title of Datuk.

Former Chief of Army Logistics, Mej Jen Abdul Rahman bin Khamis, PGB (Retired) conferred the Panglima Jasa Negara (PJN) which carries the honorific title of Datuk.


There are still several other high ranking officers of the Armed Forces who have retired, and are not conferred with either a state or federal award. I note that there are even some high ranking officers who have been chief of their respective service (Army, Navy and Air Force) have not been conferred the PSM that carries the honorific title of Tan Sri, which they rightly deserve as head of the service.

I would also like to recall the rather late conferement of the Seri Setia Makhota (SSM) upon Jen Ibrahim Ismail which carries the honorific title of Tun, only after 33 years of his retirement as Chief of Defence Forces; the highest rank attained in the Armed Forces. He was conferred the SSM in 2002.

To members of the Armed Forces and to the entire nation, Jen Tun Ibrahim Ismail is the only living military officer to have served the country during second World War, the first Malayan Emergency, Indo-Malaysia Confrontation, and served part of the 'Second Malaysian Emergency”

He was the Chief of Defence Force during the 1969 racial riots, and was also the National Operations Council, Chief Executive Officer appointed by then Prime Minister Tun Abdul Razak. For his undivided loyalty and service to the nation, Jen Tun Ibrahim Ismail should have been conferred the SSM even while he was in service, and many among the military circle are dumb founded as to the reasons why Jen Tun Ibrahim Ismail was only conferred the SSM at a frail age of 78, and after 33 years of retired life.

I wish to make no comparison with other senior government officers who were conferred the SSM or PSM while they were still in service, but certainly I wish to say that the senior officers of the Armed Forces does seemed to have somewhat been neglected in this regards.


CRUSADE AGAINST CORRUPTION

10 comments:

Maj. Ramachandran Ramaswamy Iyer (Retd) said...

Well done Dato'
Now everyone shall open their eyes and look around for torn and tattered Generals who were simply soldiers for King and country. They had no career plans beyond their career and did justice to the service. I do recall many of them. May justice be served and this true nationalists in uniform be duly recognised. On another point, I watched the trooping of colours and I believe our Mindef PR people should monitor the scripts of the TV folks - I heard (for the first time) tongkat waran (referring to the RSMs'Pace Stick) Then the officer's sword should be referred to as "Pedang Tauliah"????Surely some sensible terms of reference translated logically should be in order.

mohamad said...

This article has cleared many questions which have been hovering in my mind and I must thank Dato Arshad for sharing his views on the subject. Congratulations to all the recepients.

As a civilian with with exposures to Malaysian military and those of foreign countries such as Australia, Britain, United States and European countries, I am very much relieved to see the Nation has accordingly given respect in the best possible manner to honour the deserving "warriors". Many countries all over the world give high regards to their military for their sacrifices and we must do the same.

After reading this article, I made few calls and communicated over sms and emails to serving senior generals and retired, just to have their feelings and sentiments over the Nation's award of Tan Sriship and Datukship to some retired senior military officers.

In addition to the names which have already been highlighted in the article, one ex-Navy Chief, Vice Admiral Ahmad Ramly Noor, has also been conferred with PSM. I wonder why there is no ex-Air Force Chief?

May be, it is because Air Vice Marshal Tan Sri Sulaiman Sujak, ex-Air Force Chief, already had his turn and logically others have to wait?

I also hope the selection is never based on the colours of uniform they wear or whether their faces are photogenic enough to be on the cameras and handsome enough to be approved by the Armed Forces Council!

By biggest question is, "Why is the country taking too long to honour some people?" General Shahrom and Admiral Ramli could have made many Datukships and rows of medals on the chest before getting their Tan Sris but Maj Gen Lai and Mej Gen Abdul Rahman Kamis are receiving their first Datukship just in time to prepare for their next world! Please put a stop to this discrimination culture.

There must be some very serious discrepencies in the honours and awards systems in the military. There are some Brigadiers who put his first star for few days and some states confer them with Datukship. This is because the officers happen to have Colonel-in-Chiefs who are very "generous" with the Datukship awards. Others of more senior ranks may have to wait for substantive rank and only to be conferred Datukship after at least a year.

There are feelings that an officer must attain his substative rank of Brigadier and recommended by the service before a state could propose an award. The state, too, has to respect the minimum of one year in the rank of Brigadier before an officer can be made a Dato.

It seems this was the practice during the early years but like anything else, we are good in circum-navigation! I suppose Dato Arshad, you have some views on this and of course, the PAT and the service chiefs have to learn to say "hold and wait" to the states in order to make sure the awards are not "CHEAP!"

Have you heard about some very senior officers who were entirely forgotten by the states though their Colonel-in-Chiefs were awarding state Datukships to almost all junior generals in the same service wearning the same coloured uniforms? Again, the PAT and the service chiefs must take trouble to do some home work because this "overlook" culture can be very disasterous to the service and the officers concerned. Again, let us avoid discriminations!

I am looking forward to more deserving retired military officers to be appropriately conferred with Federal and state awards in the future.

aah said...

Salam Dato,

I got my first medal a PPA way back in 1972 and it was one and the only medal conferred to me during my entire service of twenty one years as an officer in the ROYAL MALAY REGIMENT.

My military carrier was no short cut,started as a Platoon Commander,Inteligent officer,Adjutant,Aide de camp(ADC),SO3 OPERATIONS 3 Bde,Company Commander,SO2 Oprations National Security Council PMs Department,Military Intelligent Officer Kedah/Perlis,a psc holder and CI ROTU UUM Sintok.

Imagine after 21 years of loyal and dedicated service to the King and the Country, this is what I got in return, a PPA medal which any 'bidan kampung' also receive it.

Look at the current Generals chest theres no more space to hang the medals,some even receive more than five Datukship award from the state.

General Tan Sri,Dato Seri Pahlawan,Dato Seri,Datuk Wira Aziz Zainal please take a look otherwise the armed forces general will be known as MEDAL GENERALS.

ArshadRaji said...

Dear All,

I acknowledge the fact that there are some 'politics' involved in the confirmation of the list of officers to receive honours and awards. This confirmation is usually scrutinized by Personnel Division.
I have known of officers who have been totally left out, and the blame lies in some of the commanders who seemed to ignore the need to reward their officers with honours and awards.
If one have served 21 years of service, he certainly deserve to get more that just the PPA

aofuad said...

aah,
Yes i remember you as CI of ROTU UUM and i was CI of ROTU ITM...
I do remember that the 5 CIs' of the ROTUs' was quite an impressive lot..independent and know all, when as Majors we handled the commisioning of more cadets than the RMC Cadet Wing!!!
Azudin O Fuad

Hamzali said...

well!!! do you really want it? I for one do not want it. I really appreciate my PPA untill Lt Kol and one of the GOC saw it and ask me how long I'd been Lt Kol, coming to 3rd yr Dato'. You deserve more than PPA. Yes I deserve more than PPA but what the heck for????. I may want campaign medal but not nice looking ribbon which meant nothing. I'm still serving guys, and I'd always joke around with friends, can I just put on one medal only, he asked why I said I only deserve PPA and of course the new one PJM. The rest is mere decoration. Do not be unduly worry about all these medals and docoration and Datukship or Tan Sriship. It is just a piece of cloth and meant nothing. I know I've got one and Dato' Arshad too.

Maj. Ramachandran Ramaswamy Iyer (Retd) said...

Dato'
The most embarassing incident that I am till today peeved of with, is when I got a phone call from Mindef, after I have retired. A Corporal spoke to me to confirm my home address and told me that the Defence Minister will come state to state and honour us with the PJM. That was five years ago, and the VIP is now the PM. Then, I was informed that I could go to Mindef and pick up my medal. Well, all I can say is, I am not a dog looking out for scraps. They can take MY MEDAL and shove it up where the sun don't shine on their body. I am a stickler for tradition. What is so difficult to ask us to be ON PARADE IN MINDEF in our best suites and pin the honours on us, as it should be?

nik juzailah said...

MEDALS....AIYAH

IF THEY KNOW WHAT IT MEANS TO HAVE 7 ROWS ON THE UNIFORM!

23 YEARS OF SERVICE AND ONLY ONE PPA WHICH I AM VERY PROUD OF....

SERVED THE UN IN SOMALIA TWICE, NEW YORK UN HQ, REPRESENTED THE ARMED FORCES IN RUGBY, PLAYED RUGBY & HOCKEY FOR THE CORP.NOT TO MENTION AN ATHLETE TOO.....

NOT TO MENTIONED THE COUNTLESS CIW OPERATIONS...

CAN'T SAY MUCH ! AM HAPPY AND PROUD TO HAVE ONE PPA MEDAL AND NOT SHOW THE WORLD WHAT WE HAVE ACHIEVED BY BAR RIBBONS ONLY..

SUBSTANCE IS MORE VALUABLE AND IMPORTANT THAN 8 ROWS OF CLOTH & METAL!

komando said...

What it the real value of datukship and the others? Not to talk about other lesser medals...

If Shah Rukh Khan can have Datukship?
What has he contributed to this country?
What sacrifice has he made, how many communists did he kill, capture...? How many times have he been shot at?

If national sportsman and women can be datuks...what have soldiers to say when the are killed, maimed, injured & suffered in silence for upteem years !

Nobody knows how soldiers lived and survive those days...before 1989 ! Not soldiers today...!

Sorry folks we are all forgotten, don't talk about the PJM ( Pingat Jasa Malaysia - ALL TROOPS WHO SERVED BEFORE THE PKM LAID DOWN ITS ARMS - 1989) it is a shame..foreign troops are decorated in a ceremony befitting their status and honour, when they received it.

Local officers and men who have retired just collect them at the office like laundry at a DHOBY!

That's it we are third class citizens...mat sallehs and white skinned people are MASTERS STILL!

ALL MAKAN TAHI MAT SALLEH UNTIL TODAY....

CAN DATO' ARSHAD TAKE UP THIS MATTER WITH PM AND MIN OF DEFENCE?

The Braveheart said...

Why can't MINDEF award all ex commissioned officers of the 3 services who had served before 1989 with the Various Armed Forces Medals (for who did not get them)...

Parade them and pin them...