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Problems of 2 NZEF


WE now come to what have been called the 2 NZEF ‘Controls’ or ‘Authorities’, i.e., those officers or units whose authority extended throughout the force. Some authorities, in fact the greater part, existed from the beginning of the force to the end; some did not appear until various later points in the life of the force; and one disappeared after the first two years. The list given below is the maximum. It does not appear that there was ever an official order of precedence of this miscellaneous group of offices, and the order given is adopted from various orders of battle.

List of Authorities

  • Military Secretary (MS)

  • Director of Medical Services (DMS)

  • Matron-in-Chief (later Principal Matron)

  • Assistant Director of Dental Services (ADDS)

  • Deputy Director of Ordnance Services (DDOS) – until 1942, then merged with ADOS 2 NZ Division.

  • Assistant Director of Mechanical Engineering (ADME) – representative of CREME 2 NZ Division after 1942.

  • Chief Paymaster (also Financial Adviser)

  • Senior Chaplain

  • Deputy Judge Advocate-General (DJAG)

  • Public Relations Officer (PRO)

  • Second Echelon (2 Ech)

  • Assistant Director of Education and Rehabilitation Services (ADERS)

  • Assistant Director of Postal Services (ADPS)

  • Auditor

  • Archivist

  • Commissioner National Patriotic Fund

  • Commissioner YMCA

  • Senior Secretary Church Army

  • Club Manager

  • Commissioner Red Cross

  • Printing and Stationery Unit

  • Ciphers

  • Censor Sections

  • WAACS – three divisions, welfare, hospital and clerical. Camp Commandant

page 115

At the risk of reiteration, it must be pointed out that part of the justification for the existence of HQ 2 NZEF was the need for some measure of co-ordination among all these varied offices.

Of the ‘corps’ in the army, the heads of medical, dental, chaplains, pay, postal, and educational were stationed at HQ 2 NZEF. In all other cases, the heads of corps were the senior officers of that corps in the Division. They all had a certain amount of ‘NZEF’ work to do, especially for promotion of officers, manpower and war establishments. The list is as follows:

  • Armoured Corps – Commander 4 Armoured Brigade (after 1942)

  • Cavalry – CO Divisional Cavalry (until 1942)

  • Artillery – CRA

  • Engineers – CRE after 1943 (see next paragraph)

  • Signals – CRSigs

  • Infantry (including MG and Maori) – GOC personally


  • Ordnance – ADOS


  • Provost – DAPM

  • Ciphers While not strictly speaking ‘corps’, the GSO I of the Division was looked on as the head.

  • Field Security While not strictly speaking ‘corps’, the GSO I of the Division was looked on as the head.

During 1941, 1942, and 1943, when we had a large number of non-divisional engineer units, we had no head of the corps of engineers in 2 NZEF. There were more non-divisional companies than divisional ones; and the work was so varied that it was impossible to appoint either the CRE or the head of any non-divisional group as the head of all engineer units. There was no justification for a separate officer as head of the corps. In the end a combination of OICA and the Military Secretary – the latter an engineer officer as it happened – kept a watchful eye on the interests of the corps of engineers as a whole. When in late 1943 the non-divisional engineers were disbanded, the CRE of the Division was appointed Chief Engineer for 2 NZEF, and all was well thereafter.

The list of authorities given on page 114 now merits some attention. As was stated in the Introduction, it is proposed to mention here only those things that caused problems to HQ 2 NZEF, i.e., to the office of OICA. Every authority had problems of his own within his particular sphere, some of them being mentioned in other volumes of our War History.