+ Country : Malaya
+ Class : Stamp & Philatey
+ Prefix : MYBMA
+ Σ Group : 4
+ Σ Stamp : 28
+ Σ Variety : 21
+ Σ Listing : Postage Stamp, Revenue & Tax, Postcard Prepaid (With Indicia), Envelope Registered
The British Military Administration (BMA) was the interim administrator of British Malaya between the end of World War II and the establishment of the Malayan Union in 1946. Specifically, the entity lasted from September 1945 to April 1946. The Federated Malay States, the Unfederated Malay States as well as the Straits Settlement including Singapore were placed under temporary British military rule.
After the Japanese had surrendered on 2 September 1945, and the British returned to Malaya, all Japanese issued stamps were invalidated. The Director of Posts landed in Singapore pn 6 September and had reached Kuala Lumpur by 13 September.
Postal services in Singapore and Johore resumed on 17 September and had spread to the remainder of the country by 5 October. No stamps were initially required so all mail up to 1 oz was carried free. The free post period of one month enabled the British Military Administration to restart the postal service before the arrival of the BMA stamps on 19 October.
De La Rue & Co, Limited, had overprinted available stocks of pre-war Straits Settlements stamps earlier in 1945 and initial supplies of these London overprints were placed on sale from 19 October (1, 2a, 4, 6a, 7 and 8a) with the 15 and 25 cents (11 and 13a) issued later. A second consignment contained dollar values including the $5 purple and orange. Duplicate plates were subsequently sent to the Government Printing Office in Kuala Lumpur, where the overprinting of surviving local stocks of 1, 5, 10 and 15 cents (overprinted in black) and $5 green and red of emerald took place and also to Australia for those shipments which had been diverted there in 1941 upon the war outbreak.
The stamps were used throughout all Malay States and in Singapore. From 1948 this general issue was gradually replaced by individual issues for each state. The last usage was in Kelantan where B.M.A. overprints were not withdrawn until 10 July 1951.
By Proclamation No. 1 (1945), the Supreme Allied Commander of Southeast Asia established the British Military Administration which assumed full judicial, legislative, executive and administrative powers and responsibilities and conclusive jurisdiction over all persons and property throughout such areas of Malaya. The Proclamation also declared that all laws and customs existing immediately prior to the Japanese Occupation would be respected, except that such of the existing law as the Chief Civil Affairs Officer considered practicable to administer during the period of military administration. Otherwise, all proclamations and legislative enactments of whatever kind issued by or under the authority of the Japanese Military Administration ceased to have effect.
Lord Louis Mountbatten became the director of the administration in September 1945. Major-General Ralph Hone was given the post of Chief Civil Affairs Officer responsible for the Peninsula. Other professional soldiers and former European civil servants who had joined the army during the war comprised the government as well.
During the same time, Singapore became the headquarters of the British Governor General in Southeast Asia.
On April 1 1946, the BMA was dissolved and was replaced with a confederation named Malayan Union. Singapore however was separated from the confederation by the British and made a crown colony by its own right.