Is it constitutionally permissible for the nation's highest examination body to enact rules and regulations on the methods of civil examinations and on-the-job training for those who wish to work as civil servants?
The Examination Yuan, being the highest examination organ of the State, may formulate rules for and methods of examination within its authority. The review and approval of provisions concerning apprenticeship in Article 8 of the Examination Rules for the 1974 Taiwan Province Junior- grade Public Servants’ Special Examination, and the Taiwan Province Junior-grade Public Servants’ Special Examination of 1974: Qualification Measures of Apprenticeship do not exceed the scope of the Examination Yuan's duty, nor do they abridge the people's right to take examinations or infringe upon the Constitution.
The applicant in this case applied for a qualification certificate after passing the 1974 Taiwan Province Junior-grade Public Servants' Special Examination without having completed an apprenticeship. The relevant authority refused to issue such a certificate based on Article 8 of the Examination Rules for the 1974 Taiwan Province Junior-grade Public Servants' Special Examination and its Qualification Measures of Apprenticeship. The applicant asserted that the said Rules and Measures were administrative ordinances, and the chapter which imposed apprenticeship as a part of the examination process was contrary to the Examination Act and its Enforcement Rules, thus abridging the people's right to examinations and public offices guaranteed by the Constitution. The said Yuan had dismissed the applicant's assertion in its Judgment No. 265 of 1978 by applying the provision of Article 8 of the abovementioned Rules and Measures. The applicant requested an interpretation of the Constitution by this Yuan under Article 4, Paragraph 1, Subparagraph 2, of the Grand Justices Council Adjudication Act for the reason that the laws adopted in reaching the said final and binding judgment infringed upon the Constitution. The Examination Yuan is the highest examination organ of the State, and is in charge of matters relating to examination under the authority granted by Article 83 of the Constitution. Pursuant to such authority, it may formulate examination rules and adopt suitable examination methods. Reference to "apprenticeship" in Article 8 of the Examination Rules for the 1974 Taiwan Province Junior-grade Public Servants' Special Examination and in its Measures means “on-the-job,” and can be equated with "learning" as referred to in Article 6 of the Enforcement Rules of the Examination Law. Apprenticeship is a proper means of testing the examination candidates, providing them with an understanding of the duties involved and preparing them for the position. Therefore, the candidates must have successfully completed an apprenticeship before they are issued a qualification certificate. Apprenticeship is a component of the examination process, and should be distinguished from "probation." The imposition of apprenticeship, which applies to all qualified candidates, does not exceed the Examination Yuan's authority nor is it contradictory to the spirit of the examination system contained in Article 85 of the Constitution. Even if Article 8 of the aforementioned Examination Rules delegates matters concerning apprenticeship to the determination of the Taiwan provincial government, such delegation cannot be said to have abridged the people's right of examination nor will it infringe upon Article 18 of the Constitution. Furthermore, the applicant's assertion that Article 8 of the aforementioned Examination Rules and Apprenticeship Measures are inconsistent with the Examination Act and have infringed upon the Examination Administration Act and Examination Supervision Act, or the question of whether their promulgation procedures were legal, are not questions concerning the interpretation of the Constitution. Therefore, under Article 4, Paragraph 1, Subparagraph 2, of the Grand Justices Council Adjudication Act, they should not be considered by this court. Translated by Wei-Feng Huang of THY Taiwan International Law Offices.