Universiteit Stellenbosch
Welkom by Universiteit Stellenbosch
Outeur: Maj E. Meintjes
Gepubliseer: 25/09/2023

The Military Academy has recently made a significant change to its history by laying down their old unit colours and receiving new unit colours.  This took place during a prestigious parade, led by the  SA Army band, Western Cape, in the Joe Modise Hall on 26 April 2023, marking a new chapter in its long-standing history. 

The Military Academy would have received its first unit colours at its birthday celebrations on 10 December 1980.  But, unfortunately there were delays in the manufacturing thereof and the unit received its colours on 25 July 1981 at a special parade, officiated by then State President, Mr Marais Viljoen, who even thén referred to the Military Academy as one of the “bragging units of the Defence Force".

The colours was made of gold banner silk with the Disa embroidered on and the slogan Discendo Armemus at the bottom.

The laying down of the old unit colours is a significant moment for any unit, since its a symbol of the unit's heritage, tradition and history, and they represent the pride and loyalty of the officers who have served under them.  The old unit colours were a source of inspiration and motivation for generations of officers who have graduated from the Academy over the past four decades.

The decision to replace the old unit colours was not taken lightly.  The reason was primarily due to their deterioration over time and after a thorough consultation process.  The new unit colours were designed to reflect the Military Academy's current values and ethos while also respecting its rich heritage and tradition.  The DISA was kept at the centre of the colours, but the shield and elephant tusks were added to recognise the unit's affiliation to its higher headquarters, Training Command. The slogan, Discendo Armemus (Arm yourself through knowledge) remained at the bottom.

The new colours are a symbol of the Military Academy's commitment to excellence, professionalism, and service to the country.  They represent the unit's dedication to producing well-trained and disciplined officers who are ready to serve their country with honor and distinction. 

The presentation of the new unit colours was a momentous occasion.  The new colours were blessed by the Military Academy's chaplain, Chaplain Dora Mphahlele, and then presented to the Military Academy's Commandant, Brigadier General Albeno Jose de Castro, symbolizing the acceptance of the new colours by the unit's leadership.

The new unit colours will inspire and motivate the members who will graduate from the Military Academy in the years to come, and they will become a source of pride and loyalty to them.  This event also emphasised the importance placed on the unit's values, namely Dignity, Integrity, Service before Self, and Accountability, which in turn will ensure that the Academy continues to produce well-trained and disciplined officers.

By Major Engela Meintjes

Photos: Warrant Officer Class2 Debbie Guthry

1284 – Parade formed up in front of Joe Modise Hall

1321 – Brigadier General de Castro addressing the audience

4822 – Parade marching with old colours on the left and new colours on the right side

1298 – Commandant handing over the old colours to the Chaplain (Cpln Mphahlele)