Police to impose gun, liquor ban


THE Philippine National Police (PNP) will impose a 48-hour gun and liquor ban in the city of Manila from January 8 to January 10, 2018 for the annual Feast of the Black Nazarene.

The gun ban will mean the temporary suspension of permits to carry firearms from midnight of January 8 to midnight of January 10, Manila Police District (MPD) head Chief Supt. Joel Coronel said.

“People who may have compelling reasons to seek exemption from the gun ban are advised to simply avoid Manila on the ban’s period of effectivity,” Coronel said in a press briefing on Thursday.

DEVOTION A girl kisses the image of the Black Nazarene at the Minor Basilica of the Black Nazarene in Quiapo, Manila. Thousands of devotees have started flocking to the church in Quiapo days before the Nazarene’s feast on Jan. 9. PHOTO BY BOB DUNGO JR.

The city government of Manila cancelled classes in all levels in public and private schools on January 9, 2018. City hall personnel were also told not to report to work.

Coronel said he has submitted to the Office of the City Mayor a recommendation for a liquor ban.

If the mayor issues an order, the liquor ban will prohibit the “sale, distribution, consumption of liquor and other alcoholic beverages within a 500-meter radius from the vicinity of the procession route” including Luneta and Quiapo Church, and will cover the time between 6 p.m. of January 8 to 6 a.m. of January 10.

“Establishments which are accredited by the Department of Tourism shall not be covered by this ban,” Coronel said.

The Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines has also declared the airspace above the procession route a no-fly zone for aircraft, including drones.

About 7,000 uniformed personnel will be deployed to secure the Feast of the Black Nazarene. Coronel said that intelligence authorities have monitored no “credible actual, direct threats” to the annual religious feast.

He added that telecommunication companies will order “intermittent shutdowns” of mobile phone signals within the vicinity of the procession route.

Almost 19 million devotees are expected to attend the Traslacion and participate in the series of activities marking the annual feast, which officially kicked off on December 31.


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