Fri, Jun 21, 2013 - Page 4 News List

Premier cautions public servants on drinking and driving

By Shih Hsiu-chuan  /  Staff reporter

Premier Jiang Yi-huah (江宜樺) yesterday urged public servants not to drink and drive, saying that the Public Functionary Discipline Commission would hand down “the most severe punishments” for bureaucrats and officials who violate the drunk-driving laws.

Jiang’s remarks came after recent drunk-driving accidents involving public servants, including one over the weekend in which an employee of the Council of Agriculture’s Taitung Forest District Office allegedly hit and killed two young people, a brother and sister.

Executive Yuan spokesperson Cheng Li-wun (鄭麗文) said Jiang told a Cabinet meeting that public servants should never drink and drive because they have to set a good example to society.

The recent cases of public servants being involved in drunk-driving accidents not only were a tragedy for victims’ families, but they have also “greatly tarnished the government’s image,” Jiang was quoted by Cheng as saying.

Aside from the penalties for drivers involved in alcohol-related traffic accidents under the recently revised Criminal Code — those found guilty face a jail sentence of up to 10 years — Jiang said they would also be handed “the most severe punishment” by the Public Functionary Discipline Commission, the spokesman said.

Later yesterday, Directorate-General of Personnel Administration Minister Frank Huang (黃富源) said that public servants who drive while over legal alcohol limit could be dismissed from their posts if the violation is determined to be severe.

Not every public servant would face losing his or her job because of drunk-driving, but the Public Functionary Discipline Commission can decide to give that punishment in accordance with the Civil Servants Evaluation Act (公務人員考績法) and the Public Functionaries Discipline Act (公務員懲戒法), Huang said.

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