By Hanah Tabios
It was a major sacrifice for some police officers acting as the “andas wall” during Thursday’s “Traslacion” to remain strong and unbreached until the iconic 400-year-old image of the dark skinned kneeling Jesus Christ reaches its final destination in Quiapo Church.
At Ayala Boulevard, the newest procession route, hundreds of devotees penetrated the “andas wall” in hopes to climb the carriage of the Black Nazarene.
The block of 2,144 policemen forcibly pushed some eager devotees to keep the wall intact. But earlier reports said some attendees complained about being stepped on by on-duty policemen wearing combat boots.
When asked if there would be a shifting of duties, a policeman who refused to be identified said: “Wala po itong palitan Ma’am. Kung sino andiyan sa may lubid, sila na hanggang matapos.”
In fact, all the assigned “andas wall” policemen can be heard shouting movement instructions to prevent breaking their position. They were all clad in blue shirt with yellow “PULIS” prints at the back. All were also wearing hand gloves.
During Monday’s press conference, National Capital Region Police Office (NCRPO) chief Debold Sinas revealed that it was their idea to create the said barricade.
The procession route of this year’s “Traslacion” was also altered due to improvement works in some of Manila’s bridges.