By Ria Fernandez
Several prohibitions will be implemented in the capital city as the Traslacion of the Black Nazarene draws closer, Manila Police District (MPD) reminded the public.
Based on the list released by MPD Director Vicente Danao Jr., the zero vendor policy will start to take effect in all processional routes at 12:01 a.m. on Jan. 7.
Atty. Ericson Alcovendaz, city administrator, had earlier said those who will defy it will face arrest.
Moreover, firearms, deadly weapons, firecracker, backpacks, colored canisters, and water jags will be banned effective 5 a.m. on Jan. 8, which marks the pahalik or the traditional touching of the Black Nazarene at the Quirino Grandstand on the eve of Traslacion.
Liquor ban will also begin at 8 a.m. on the same day.
Danao said buying, selling, and drinking of alcoholic beverages will not be allowed until the culmination of the annual religious event.
Aerial, ground inspection
Meanwhile, National Capital Regional Police Office (NCRPO) chief Guillermo Eleazar conducted an early aerial and ground inspection of theTraslacion routes on Saturday.
The Metro Manila’s top cop first checked the Quirino Grandstand after he alighted from the chopper.
He then boarded his service vehicle and proceeded to the succeeding areas to be covered by the procession of the Black Nazarene.
In an interview, Eleazar noted that adjustments have to be made in Segments 6 to 10 or from Palanca Street up to Quiapo Church.
“We saw from the top that they are almost close to each other and devotees can only move around to a small area…You could just imagine that the tail of the procession is not yet through then its mouth will already start to cross. [This is] for security purposes as it will be hard to control the people on the day itself,” he said in a mix of Filipino and English.
Eleazar said they target to finish all of the preparations this weekend in accordance to their plan so that by Monday they will be focused on the replica procession up to the main event on Jan. 9.