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Your Algarve News Highlights - March 16th 2024

Your Algarve News Highlights - March 16th 2024

Dear Reader,


Here is your weekly news overview…

GNR begin "Spring Break 2024" border operation

This week, Portugal's National Republican Guard (GNR) police force have begun carrying out an operation to raise awareness among the school community and to carry out checks at land borders regarding students travels during the Spring Break.


According to the GNR, the "Spring Break 2024" operation, which is taking place in two phases, involves awareness-raising activities among the school community and inspections at the borders of Vilar Formoso, in the district of Guarda, Caia, in Portalegre, and Vila Real de Santo António, in the Algarve.


The operation aims to prevent risky behaviour among young people who travel to southern Spain and Catalonia on holiday at this time of year.


In the first phase, which runs until 24 March, the GNR will be carrying out awareness-raising activities with young people, with the aim of raising students' awareness of the risk behaviours associated with "the consumption of drugs and alcohol inherent in senior trips and school holidays, aimed at the target group of students from the 9th to the 12th year of schooling".


Between 22 March and 7 April, the GNR, with the support of the criminal investigation team and drug detection binomials, in coordination with the Spanish Guardia Civil, will carry out inspections near the land borders in Vilar Formoso, Caia, and Vila Real de Santo António.


According to the GNR in a statement, the aim is "to detect the practice of offences associated with the consumption of narcotic substances, as well as to guarantee the safety conditions of the vehicles that will be transporting the young people".


The PSP is also carrying out awareness-raising activities among students who are going on finalist trips, warning them against excessive alcohol and drug consumption during journeys.


In a statement sent to Lusa on Tuesday, the Public Security Police said that the "Senior Trips" operation will run until 22 March throughout the country, at a time when pupils are going on senior trips, with Spain being one of the most frequent destinations.



Man carrying an axe and knives detained in Portimão

The PSP arrested a man in Portimão on Wednesday, for possession of a prohibited weapon, following a call alerting police that the man was allegedly wielding a knife.


According to the PSP, the suspect was detected with two large knives and an axe in his possession, having claimed that they were used for self-defense.

The suspect, who was arrested and the weapons seized. 



PSP issues warning about a car fraud scheme

The PSP have launched an alert on social media about a fraud scheme related to the purchase and sale of cars, on online platforms. This scheme, which has been gaining ground, is based on the cloning of legitimate vehicle sales advertisements.


According to the PSP Lisbon Metropolitan Command, the fraudster's modus operandi consists of copying vehicle sale advertisements, deceiving both the real seller and potential buyers. The criminal selects ads on popular platforms such as OLX, Facebook and Standvirtual and contacts advertisers, trying to obtain as much information about the vehicle in question.


Subsequently, the fraudster replicates the advertisement, using the same photos and characteristics of the vehicle, but with a sales price considerably lower than the actual value. This tactic aims to attract potential buyers by offering an attractive price.


The next step is to request that payment be made by bank transfer, indicating a NIB associated with an account controlled by the criminal. Once the transfer has been made, there is an intermediary who receives the money into your bank account and immediately withdraws the amount in cash. This intermediary receives a 20% commission on the amount transferred, while the rest is handed over to those truly responsible for the fraud.


This type of fraud has been worrying the authorities, due to its increasing incidence and the damage it causes to both legitimate sellers and potential buyers. The PSP advises users of online platforms to be alert to this type of scheme, carefully checking the legitimacy of the advertisements and avoiding making advance payments by bank transfer.


In the event of any suspicion of fraud, the PSP recommends that citizens contact the authorities immediately, in order to prevent more people from becoming victims of this type of crime.



Zoomarine sponsor young sailor, João Pontes

Zoomarine have announced that it will be the official sponsor of young sailor João Pontes, during the year 2024. According to a statement from the company, this sponsorship aims to support the Algarve athlete in developing his journey towards qualifying for the 2028 Los Angeles Olympic Games.
The company say that the sponsorship "is aligned with the theme park's social responsibility strategy, which intends to invest in the region's athletes, supporting them in their sporting journey".
Sailor of the Clube Naval de Cascais, Sailing Ambassador appointed by the Portuguese Institute of Sports and Youth (IPDJ), and with Olympic Hope status awarded by the Portuguese Olympic Committee, at just 18 years old, João Pontes already has several national titles and results in the main regattas on the international circuit.
For Hugo Brites, director of Marketing and Communication at Zoomarine Algarve, "we believe in our region and in its promotion in various aspects and activities, which is why we are very proud to support sailor João Pontes on his journey and we are certain that he will be able to achieve the its goal of participating in the 2028 Olympics. Sailing is a water sport that promotes respect for water and the environment, thus being in line with Zoomarine's mission and values, so it made perfect sense for us to be associated with and support the practice of this sporting activity.", he added.
João Pontes, Portuguese sailor, highlighted that "this sponsorship is very important for the path that I intend to continue developing to become one of the athletes competing at the Los Angeles 2028 Olympics. In addition, having the support of Zoomarine, a family company that I have known since I was a child and where I spent many happy moments, makes this partnership even more special, especially because I know Zoomarine's concerns with the oceans, and the work they do in environmental conservation and respect for the sea, something that sailing also defend."
João Pontes' first race sponsored by Zoomarine will take place in Palma de Mallorca from March 16th to 23rd and counts towards the U21 European Championship.



Election: slim centre-right win

This was Portugal’s most hotly contested legislative election since the ‘Carnation Revolution’ 50 years ago. The outcome has been a slim victory for the centre-right Democratic Alliance over the incumbent centre-left Socialist Party. Both of the main centrist parties will likely jockey with small parties to gain the most seats in parliament, but the far-right made such gains to finish third that it will provide much stronger opposition than ever before. 


A low voter turnout had been expected because of dissatisfaction with politicians in general, but it was higher than the 45% registered for the last election in 2022.  The much respected former Prime Minister Antonio Costa said “it is fundamental that everyone votes.” President Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa also urged all eligible citizens to vote. By noon on Sunday, four hours after the polling stations opened, a quarter of the electorate had done so.  Even by 4 pm well over 50% had been to the ballot boxes.


The polls closed at 7pm on the mainland and an hour later in the Azores archipelago.  With the counting all butconcluded, these were the main results:


PSD (AD) – 29.8%


PS – 28.7%


Chega –  18.2%


The key players: Luis Montenegro will be prime minister as leader of the Portuguese Democratic Party (PSD) supported by smaller parties in the Democratic Alliance (AD).


Pedro Nuno Santos of the Socialist Party (PS) has succeeded Antonio Costa who had been prime minister since 2015 with a strong majority before his resignation last November.


Andre Ventura, a former football pundit, has led the far-right Chega (Enough) party since its foundation five years ago. He will be a formidable foe to the centrists who claim he is xenophobic, racist and demagogic.


The challenges facing the new government include low wages, the deterioration in the national health system, the housing shortage and corruption.  It was an influence- peddling investigation that brought down the Socialist government in November and obliged President Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa to call for this snap election.


While plenty of problems are facing the new administration, Portugal will remain one of the most peaceful countries in the world, although probably the poorest in Europe amid the current global financial crisis.


The outcome of Portugal’s latest election will be viewed with considerable interest within the European Union, which is to hold its own parliamentary election in June. The current EU parliament will be hoping for a majority of moderate candidates, but there have been many shifts to far-right populist parties similar to Chega.  

Written by Len Port

More news next week!




The News this week is sponsored by Portugal Pathways:

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Lagoa & Faro Kids Rugby Club forthcoming matches

Clube de Rugby Universitário do Algarve Lagoa and Faro Kids Rogby teams will play against Kids Rugby teams from Canada and Ireland, hosted at Browns Sports Resort, Almancil.



Do you need Home Care? Our Carers have Joy4Caring

Joy4Caring provides non-medical home care services, ensuring 24/7 support in the comfort of your home. Joy4Caring services include personal hygiene assistance, household tasks and specialised care.



‘AFPOP Presents …’ Prostate Awareness

afpop, Portugal’s largest Foreign Residents’ Association, hosted the second of its Prostate Awareness presentations at the HPA Gambelas facility last week, with 60 people attending to hear the presentation by the Portuguese urologist, Professor Tiago Rodrigues. The presentation included a free PSA test for those who wanted to check their PSA score.



Professional Carpet & Upholstery Cleaning

Sofalux Algarve can get rid of blood, suntan lotion, vomit, and much more...  keep your sofas, mattresses and rugs clean and hygienic with regular professional deep cleaning.




Spacious 4 bedroom apartment for sale, in Ferragudo Valley

Spacious duplex apartment in excellent condition in a very sought after small condominium, in a quiet area with a communal pool and gardens and only a short stroll to Praia Grande & village centre.



For Sale: Modern 3 Bedroom Villa in Santa Bárbara de Nexe

This 3 bedroom villa is a testament to modern Mediterranean architecture, boasting sleek lines, strategic lighting, and a predominantly white colour palette.



Charming 3 bed house with amazing sea & village views, 300m to Carvoeiro beach & amenities

This fully renovated 3 bedroom house with amazing sea and village views is located just 300m to Carvoeiro beach and all amenities.



Tomar: Fantastic T3 +1 +1 Fully Renovated Villa with Landscaped Gardens and Splash Pool

A quick sale is needed for this fantastic T3 +1 +1 fully renovated home in Tomar, with landscaped gardens, a bore hole and splash pool.



For Sale: plot with sea view for the construction of villa with pool, Praia da Luz

Located in the heart of the sought-after new development of Monte Lemos in Praia da Luz, this exceptional plot offers a unique opportunity to build the house of your dreams. With an area of 560m2, this plot is intended to accommodate a 205m2 villa spread over two levels, with an underground garage and a pool.




afpop Events in March & April 2024

Here are some new events, scheduled for this March and April, 2024.



Plant Fair - 6th April 2024, S. Brás de Alportel

Join us for a wonderful day, to celebrate the fact that the spring has sprung and fill your garden with water wise plants that will survive the long hot summer.



Amigos de Música concerts in March 2024



For our next AMIGOS’ CONCERTS on March 12th and 14th  2024, we are fortunate to welcome again ANDREY GUGNIN, an exceptional Russian pianist, who since the beginning of the war in Ukraine decided to live in the West  (see https://gugnin.com/biography).




To see more info about events coming up in the next few weeks, check out

My Guide Algarve's event calendar


For latest information and advice regarding crime, wildfires and the Covid-19 pandemic, visit the

Safe Communities Portugal website


Everything you need to know if you are moving to, living in or visiting the Algarve.

AngloInfo website


‍Have a great week, from the Algarve Daily News team!


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