The Ministry of Civil Service will draft a legal amendment aimed at preventing civil servants from using retirement as a method to escape punishment, Minister of Civil Service Chang Che-chen (張哲琛) said.
The issue came to the forefront this month when former High Court justice Chen Yi-nan (陳貽男) was impeached by the Control Yuan for allegedly abusing his position by accessing personal information about a female colleague last year in an attempt to woo her.
However, when the Control Yuan ordered on March 6 that the Civil Servants’ Disciplinary Committee punish Chen, it was revealed that Chen had retired in January and therefore could not be punished, and he was entitled to a monthly pension of NT$98,000 (US$3,320).
At a meeting of the legislature’s Judiciary and Organic Laws and Statutes Committee on Monday, Democratic Progressive Party Legislator Wu Yi-chen (吳宜臻) called on the Examination Yuan to find a way to close this loophole, which Wu said would set a bad precedent.
Wu said the ministry should consider amending the legal statutes so that there are no more loopholes and create a mechanism so a judge’s monthly pension could be rescinded or recalled. Wu added that judges do not currently fear the law because they know they can retire if they run into trouble.
Wu said this cavalier attitude leaves the public with the impression that judicial reform is hopeless, adding that any loophole that allows judges to escape punishment is unacceptable.
Article 7 of the Discipline of Civil Servants Act (公務員懲戒法) states: “Civil servants with cases pending decision in the Civil Servants’ Disciplinary Committee may not be laid off or apply for retirement. Civil servants under impeachment by the Control Yuan are subject to the same aforementioned treatment.”
However, Chang said Chen’s application for retirement was made before the Control Yuan impeached him.
Chang said the ministry would discuss potential legal amendments internally as well as with other judicial and administrative organizations to combat a further recurrence of a similar situation.
Lu Ming-tai (呂明泰), director of the Department of Retirement and Survivor Relief, said similar loopholes existed for township committee members all the way to vice ministers.
Currently the ministry is debating an amendment to the Civil Servants Retirement Act (公務人員退休法) that would insert a clause stipulating that if prosecutors file legal action against a civil servant pertaining to charges that infringe on national benefits, that person’s pension would be frozen until a verdict was reached, an official said.
Translated by Jake Chung, Staff Writer
THE CHINA CONNECTION: As Beijing’s aggression increases, so does Taiwanese consciousness, making a new constitution imperative, Hsu Wei-chun said If the nation is to ratify a new constitution, it must first end any illusions about the current document’s relevance to Taiwan, an academic told a forum in Taipei yesterday. For the constitutional revisionist movement to succeed, it needs public enthusiasm, the right timing and a clear plan of action, Chung Yuan Christian University associate professor Hsu Wei-chun (徐偉群) told attendees at the event titled “Imagining a New Constitution for a New Era,” which was organized by the National Taiwan University Graduate Student Association. The Constitution exists under the “one China” framework and has little relevance to Taiwan, Hsu said, adding that
Former president Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九) yesterday urged Beijing to respect the median line of the Taiwan Strait by immediately stopping its military intimidation of Taiwan, as such actions would only hurt the feelings of Taiwanese. Beijing should immediately stop making military provocations against Taiwan, Ma wrote on Facebook after Chinese warplanes in the past week have made numerous forays across the median line that divides the Taiwan Strait. Although it has never officially acknowledged the median line, Beijing used to respect it, Ma said in response to comments on Monday by Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs spokesman Wang Wenbin (汪文斌), who said
IDENTITY: The time is right to press on with a referendum, as the nation has heightened visibility and support in the global community, the Taiwan United Nations Alliance said The Taiwan United Nations Alliance yesterday said that it is considering launching a petition for a referendum proposal to have the nation join the UN under the name “Taiwan.” Alliance chairman Twu Shiing-jer (涂醒哲) was joined at a news conference in Taipei by Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) Legislator Huang Hsiu-fang (黃秀芳) and leaders of the Presbyterian Church in Taiwan and civic organizations. They said that it is the right time for a petition because Taiwan’s visibility on the world stage has increased, as it has been praised for its success in containing its COVID-19 outbreak and for helping other countries by sharing
An advertisement displayed in the corridor of the underground Taipei City Mall has caused contention online with social media users saying that it depicts Taiwanese bears as servants of Chinese pandas. The advertisement — which imitates the style of an ancient Chinese painting, but replaces people with bears — shows a scene in imperial China, with Formosan black bears laboring, while pandas relax and enjoy beverages. “The development of the tourism industry is important, but this type of targeted advertising is extremely disrespectful — and it makes people uncomfortable,” Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) Taipei City Councilor Chen E-jun (陳怡君) said. The advertisement, under