Quiapo Church officials will cooperate with the planned investigation of the Joint Task Force (JTF) COVID Shield on the motorcade of the image of the Black Nazarene held Monday in Manila.
“We are ready to cooperate,” Monsignor Hernando “Ding” Coronel, Quiapo Church rector, said in an interview Wednesday.
“We have consulted our councils and sought permission from our superiors,” he added.
Quiapo Church parochial vicar Father Douglas Badong also expressed readiness to face any probe.
“We are open if they want to investigate us. We are prepared to answer. We are prepared to own up to our responsibilities, if there were indeed violations of quarantine protocols,” he said.
Badong also stressed that they sought the permission of Bishop Broderick Pabillo and the local government unit for the activity.
“We even asked help from the police authorities for them to assist us,” he said.
On Tuesday, JTF COVID Shield Commander Police Lieutenant General Guillermo Eleazar said Quiapo Church will be probed for supposed quarantine violations.
But Coronel believes they implemented the necessary safety measures.
“We asked the cooperation of all our Hijos (Del Nazareno) and devotees to observe health protocols. The six HDN were groups were disciplining their ranks,” he said.
The marshalls were all wearing face masks and face shields, and senior citizens were also discouraged from participating in the activity.
Badong also said the same thing.
“We asked the assistance of the police assigned in Plaza Miranda to help us maintain physical distancing. At the start, we were very orderly. But, of course, when people saw the Nazarene, we were already unable to prevent them from joining,” he said.
On Monday, the revered image of the Black Nazarene was brought out of Quiapo Church for the first time since the implementation of the community quarantine for a motorcade.
The purpose of the activity was to seek the help of the Nazareno amid the COVID-19 pandemic.