Cagayan de Oro ready to celebrate 10th Black Nazarene traslacion
CAGAYAN DE ORO CITY, Philippines – Security will be extra tight when the 10th annual Feast of the Black Nazarene and traslacion will be held here on January 8 and 9, 2019.
The Cagayan de Oro City Police Office (COCPO) activated its security plan for the annual feast which attracts some 250,000 devotees during the estimated 2-hour transfer of the image of the Black Nazarene from the Nazareno Parish to the Saint Augustine Cathedral on the night of the January 8 and its return the following day, January 9, starting at 5 am.
Superintendent Robert de los Reyes, chief of Operations and Plans office of COCPO, said that security will be tight around the city during the two-day event.
“We will be deploying a total of 836 National Police and Philippine Army soldiers to safeguard the city for the event,” de los Reyes said.
COCPO spokesperson Superintendent Mardy Hortillosa said that the city is currently under Alert Level 3 since 2017. The highest alert level is 4.
Aside from police and military personnel, there will also be barangay watchmen along the route of the procession, as well as, hundreds of civilian volunteers.
The city government’s Roads and Traffic Administration (RTA) Department head Nonito Oclarit said that the city will implement a traffic rerouting scheme. “Traffic will be diverted away from C.M. Recto Avenue (national highway) as the procession will pass through there,” Oclarit said.
RTA traffic enforces will manage the traffic flow of the city, away from Marco Bridge and reroute all traffic away from the route of the procession.
The City Disaster Risk Reduction Management Department will also activate its Incident Command Post and will establish assistance booths along the route.
According to Monsignor Elmer Abacahin, they are expecting more than 200,000 to join the procession.
“We are thankful that we do not experience the kind of crowd of the traslacion in Quiapo church, we have an orderly traslacion here,” Abacahin said.
The traslacion in Quiapo Church in Manila attracts millions of devotees, each one trying to climb the carrier of the image of the Black Nazarene.
In Cagayan de Oro, no one is allowed to climb the carrier but people can throw their towel to the ‘hijos’ or servants of the Black Nazarene.
Fr. Julius Clavero, parish priest of the Nazareno Parish church said that the ‘Pahalik’ of the Black Nazarene will be done in Saint Augustine Cathedral where thousands will hold vigil for the traslacion.
Clavero added that the Nazareno Parish Church holds three replicas of the Black Nazarene – one is the first image of the parish; the second is a donation from Quiapo Church where a piece of the original image from Acapulco, Mexico is encased; and the third, the Black Nazarene Callejeron, which other parishes borrow from the Nazareno Church.
The police urged devotees not bring children, pregnant women, handicapped persons, as there will be thousands who will join the procession.
“Aerial drones will not be allowed except for those who have prior approval. Wearing of backpack, jewelleries, dark shades, pointed umbrella is prohibited,” de los Reyes said. – Rappler.com