Military Wiki
Star of South Africa
File:Star of South Africa.jpg
Awarded by South African Defence Force
Country  South Africa
Type Decoration
Eligibility Senior military officers
Awarded for Exceptionally meritorious service
Status Discontinued
Post-nominals SSA
Established 1952
First awarded 1960
Last awarded 1975
Total awarded 20
Next (higher) Louw Wepener Decoration
Next (lower) Van Riebeeck Decoration
Ribbon - Star of South Africa (1952).gif
44mm, orange with three green stripes

The Star of South Africa was a South African military decoration that was in use from 1952 to 1975. It was awarded to senior military officers, for exceptionally meritorious service.


The decoration formed part of the series of military decorations introduced by the South African government in April 1952. It was formally instituted by Queen Elizabeth II on 26 January 1953. In effect, it took the place of the Commander of the Order of the British Empire, which had been awarded to senior South African officers during World War II. It was named after the first large diamond to be found in South Africa.


The Star of South Africa was awarded to officers of the South African Defence Force, for exceptionally meritorious service in peace or war. In practice, it was conferred only on officers of general or flag rank.


The decoration consists of eight five-pointed silver stars, of different sizes,which are superimposed on each other. The reverse displays the South African coat of arms. Those minted before 31 May 1961 have Queen Elizabeth II's royal cipher above the coat of arms.

The SSA was worn around the neck, on a 44mm wide orange ribbon with three green stripes.


Name Rank Service Position Date of Award
Melville, S.A. Commandant-General SA Air Force Commandant-General SADF 13 May 1960
Grobbelaar, P.H. Maj Gen SA Army Deputy Commandant-General 13 May 1960
Hiemstra, R.C. Maj Gen SA Air Force Inspector-General SADF 13 May 1960
Viljoen, B.G. Maj Gen SA Air Force Air Chief of Staff 13 May 1960
Biermann, H.H. R Adm SA Navy Naval Chief of Staff 13 May 1960
Bierman, J.N. Maj Gen SA Army Director of Operations 14 May 1965
Jacobs, P.J. Maj Gen SA Army Army Chief of Staff 14 May 1965
Hartzenberg, C.H. Maj Gen SA Air Force 16 Jun 1967
Fraser, C.A. Lt Gen SA Army GOC Joint Combat Forces 13 Jun 1969
Laubscher, P.H. Maj Gen SA Army Deputy Chief of Defence Staff 13 Jun 1969
Loots, F.W. Maj Gen SA Army Director-General Military Intelligence 13 Jun 1969
Raymond, E.C. Maj Gen SA Medical Service Surgeon-General 13 Jun 1969
Van der Riet, W.R. Lt Gen SA Army Chief of Defence Staff 25 May 1973
Terry-Lloyd, M.R. R Adm SA Navy 25 May 1973
Cockcroft, C.R. Lt Gen SA Medical Service Surgeon-General 28 Jun 1974
Louw, W.P. Lt Gen SA Army Inspector-General SADF 28 Jun 1974
Verster, J.P. Lt Gen SA Air Force Chief of the Air Force 28 Jun 1974
Armstrong, R.F. Lt Gen SA Air Force Chief of Staff SADF 6 Jun 1975
Malan, M.A. Lt Gen SA Army Chief of the Army 6 Jun 1975
Johnson, J. V Adm SA Navy Chief of the Navy 6 Jun 1975

See also[]


  • Alexander, E. G. M., Barron G. K. B. and Bateman, A. J. (1986). South African Orders, Decorations and Medals. Human and Rousseau.
  • Monick, S, (1988). South African Military Awards 1912-1987. South African National Museum of Military History.

External links[]

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