After passing the vocational examination, the border guard aspirants are ceremonially sworn in. The obligation to take the oath of office or make a solemn promise is linked to the broad skills of members of the Border Guard. As representatives of the state monopoly on the use of force, border guards have extensive powers which also include the use of police coercive measures. They thus have to carry out the work assigned to them with due care and attention and safeguard the justified interests of the Confederation. They must prove that they are fit to be an official, and not just in the workplace, but also outside of it.
This duty of loyalty ensures the smooth functioning of the public administration. It is also a guarantee that the public's trust in the state is not undermined.
Being sworn in to fulfil duties conscientiously is thus not only a requirement set by parliament or a ceremonial act. Above all, it is a moral obligation. An obligation which is deemed to be of such significance that refusing to take the oath or make a solemn promise as a public official means automatic resignation from the post, i.e. dismissal or relinquishing the post.
Federal law also provides for the swearing in of members of the Federal Assembly, the Federal Council and the Federal Chancellor, the Commander-in-Chief and the judges of the Federal Supreme Court, the Federal Administrative Court, the Federal Patent Court and the Federal Criminal Court.
Oath of office/solemn promise
A solemn promise may be made in lieu of swearing an oath. Both are equivalent in the eyes of the law.