Monday, 15 April 2013

Badge of the Certificate of Honour 'Federated Malay States'. GV issue (Patrick De Zilwa, J.P.)

Few days ago, I wrote about the Singapore's Badge of the Certificate of Honour, coincidentally, this medal was recently sold by UK medal dealer - Aberdeen Medals. The full description of the medal and recipient is reproduced below:
Certificate of Honour 'Federated Malay States'. GV issue 



Important: The recipient was decorated with his award on June 1932 

Note: The award is officially engraved with the recipient details, and the badge fitted with a full-length neck cravat riband, of the type specificed for non-african colonys

Established in 1926, the Badges of the Certificate of Honour - that conferred with it the use of the post nominal title M.C.H. - were awarded non-Europeans only who had resided in the Federated Malay States for at least 15 years. A maximum of only six awards could be made in any one year - and the allocation was not always utilised. All awards were published in the annual King's Birthday Honours List for the Federated Malay States, and on the death of the recipient the insignia was returnable to the issuing authority. There are numerous mentions / references to 'Pat De Zilwa' in the local FMS and Straits Settlements english speaking newspapers of the inter-war years. The below following biography on the recipient was published in The Straits Times edition of 2 July, 1935;
Fine Record of Service

 Mr Pat Zilwa Retires 

30 Years With Bank

(From our own correpondent)

Kuala Lumpur, June 28.
 Tomorrow sees the conclusion of Mr Pat Zilwa's long and honourable service with the Chartered Bank in Kuala Lumpur. For over twenty-six years has he been on the bank's staff in the Federal Capital, rising to the position of Chief Clerk, and his earlier service in Colombo makes a total of over thirty years. Now he is retiring - and, with characteristic energy, starting a business of his own. A notable feature of his life here has been his enthusiasm for public work, usually in capacities calling for great organising ability, and much sacrifice of time. It has been rewarded by his appointment as a Justice of the Peace and the confernment upon him of the Malayan Certificate of Honour. As indicating its extent, a summary of his services may be given.

War Work.

Though a Ceylonese himself, at the outbreak of the Great War he organised the Indian Relief War Fund in Selangor, being the hon. secretary. A sum of nearly a hundred thousand rupees was raised, and remitted to the Viceroy for the assistance of wounded Indian soldiers and their dependents. He also assembled a body of men locally and offered it for the purpose of local defence, a service which earned him an official expression of thanks from the Government. Since then he has been actively associated with such events as "Our Day" celebrations, the Peace celebrations, the entertainment of the crew of H.M.S. Malaya, and the visits of the Prince of Wales and the Duke of Gloucester.

He has been on the Poppy Day Committee since its inception, and has organized bazaars, fetes, football matches, boxing tournaments and other events in aid of various charities.

He has also been mainly responsible for the arrangements for a number of public functions, such as receptions or farewells to High Commissioners, Chief Secretaries, and other prominent personages.

Flood Relief.

Following the disastrous inundations of December, 1926, he was hon. secretary of and a tremendous worker for the Malayan Flood Relief Fund, for which over $400,000 was collected - and incidentally I learn that here remains a balance in hand for which suitable use may soon be found.

Here are a few of his honorary appointments;

Visiting Justice of the Prisons, Assessor of the Supreme Court, trustee of The Chartered Bank (F.M.S.) Provident Fund, chairman of the F.M.S. Benevlopment Association, president of the Selangor Recreation Club, vice-president of the Selangor Boy Scouts' Association, hon. treasurer of the Kuala Lumpur Jubilee Fund, hon. secretary of the Malayan Flood Relief Fund, member of the St. Mary's Church Committee, member of the executive committees of the Selangor Asiatic Unemployment Fund, the King George V Memorial Jubilee Fund, the Malayan Agri-Horticultural Association and the Selangor Poppy Day Fund, member of the committee of the Selangor Boxing Association, hon. steward of the Selangor Turf Club, and member of the Community Service Committee of the Kuala Lumpur Rotary Club.

Respected By All.

Among other offices which he has held in the past may be mentioned those of Chairman of the Mercantile Cooperative Thrift and Loan Society, Ltd, vice-president of the Mutual Provident Fund, hon. treasurer of the Kuala Lumpur Rotary Club, hon. treasuer of the St. Mary's School, hon. secretary of the F.M.S. Benefit Society, hon. secretary and treasurer of the Selangor Boxing Association, and hon, secretary of the Indian War Relef Fund.

Such a record is immensely creditable, and rivalled by few public men. Mr. Zilwa has by his great and capable service earned the true respect of all communities in Kuala Lumpur.


An extremely rare item of colonial insignia, and of considerable Malaysian interest.

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