On October 9, just prior to the inaugural ceremony of the new GNR Territorial Commander for Faro District, President Safe Communities Portugal David Thomas presented a letter of appreciation to the outgoing Commander, Coronel Pedro Oliveira.
Pedro Oliveira took command as a Lieutenant Coronel in May 2019, shortly after which he was promoted to Coronel, and is departing to attend the nine-month prestigious “Curso de Promoção a Oficial General” CPOG, the Generals Officer Promotion Course.
Safe Communities has worked closely with Coronel Oliveira since his appointment and took the opportunity to thank him for his work in maintaining the security and wellbeing of the communities in the Algarve, particularly during the Covid-19 pandemic and the recent major rural fires.
David Thomas said: “Having met with him and discussed various safety and security issues over this period, it is clear that, through his leadership, the GNR Faro Territorial Command has met these considerable challenges well; the Covid-19 pandemic being unprecedented during our lifetime. He has always been approachable and receptive to ways of bringing about further improvement, during a particularly challenging period, with many constraints brought about by emergency legislation in place.”
During the inauguration of the new Commander, Pedro Oliveira was praised by both his successor Lieutenant Coronel Carlos Almeida and Lieutenant General Santos Correia, Operational Commander of the GNR, who praised “his human dimension”, the “ability to establish bridges and dialogues” and the way “in which he led the assistance to the populations” in the forest fires that affected the Algarve.
The CPOG is a course for Colonels “To exercise of functions inherent to high positions of Command, Direction and General Staff, at the highest level. The CPOG is a special condition for promotion to General Officer”. In the GNR, the ranks are from Brigadier General to Lieutenant General (General Commander).
David Thomas continues: “The last course ran from October 2020 to July 2021 and was completed by 35 officers comprising, senior Portuguese and Brazilian officers, 10 from the Navy, 10 from the Army, eight from the Air Force, four from the Republican National Guard and three senior officers from the Armed Forces of Brazil.
“To be selected for this course is considered a high personal achievement.”