MANILA- Threats to the Feast of the Black Nazarene are not new since the annual event involves millions of people, National Capital Region Police Office (NCRPO) Director Chief Superintendent Oscar Albayalde said on Thursday.
Albayalde said they are always guarding against threats since Manila is the seat of the government and it has been a target of previous terror attacks.
He added, thought, that they have not received any intelligence report stating that there are terror threats specifically aimed at the Black Nazarene feast.
Officials of the Minor Basilica of the Black Nazarene and various government agencies gathered in a final meeting on Thursday, just days before the highly anticipated event.
Top officials including Manila City Mayor Joseph Estrada, Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) General Manager Thomas Orbos, Manila Police District (MPD) Director Police Senior Superintendent Napoleon Coronel, Albayalde and other personnel from different agencies said security measures are already in place for the January 9 translacion.
Over 2,000 law enforcers will be deployed on Monday to ensure public security. Police will also have three command posts on Monday: one in Quiapo, the MPD headquarters and one in Luneta Park,
Albayalde added that they have recommended to Philippine National Police Chief Director General Ronald dela Rosa the suspension of permits to carry firearms by civilians within the city of Manila from January 8 to 10.
The Manila city government will also apprehend those who will be caught drinking in public places beginning Thursday night.