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Pampanga ready for crucifixion crowd

San Fernando Mayor Edwin Santiago said the city government would ensure public safety in the observance of “Maleldo 2016” on Friday as they installed closed circuit television (CCTV) cameras in the crucifixion site.
 Jonathan Asuncion/philstar.com, file

SAN FERNANDO, Pampanga, Philippines – The local police force here has been placed on full alert as part of security preparations for Good Friday, when tens of thousands of tourists are expected to witness true-to-life crucifixions in Barangay San Pedro Cutud. 




Mayor Edwin Santiago said the city government would ensure public safety in the observance of “Maleldo 2016” on Friday as they installed closed circuit television (CCTV) cameras in the crucifixion site.


Ferdinand Caylao, executive committee chair for Maleldo (Kapampangan for Holy Week), said Telesite company installed CCTV cameras in San Pedro Cutud that would be operational from Holy Thursday until Good Friday. Crucifixion rites annually take place in Barangays San Pedro Cutud, Sta. Lucia and San Juan, but most tourists flock to San Pedro Cutud where “Kristo” Ruben Enaje would be nailed to the cross for the 30th year.

An advanced command post will be set up and manned by the police, Caylao said.

Jean Fajardo said that TV monitors would help secure the area to avoid any untoward incident and catch pickpockets. 




The police Traffic Management Division will also reroute motorists in the vicinity of the three crucifixion sites on Good Friday.

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The city’s health and disaster management officers would also deploy medical teams in the crucifixion sites.

In Cagayan Valley, thousands of Catholic devotees are expected to visit the region’s major pilgrimage sites this Holy Week.

Chief Supt. Ranier Idio, Cagayan Valley police regional director, said that the region’s police units have tightened security to ensure the safety of motorists, commuters and also to provide assistance to travelers.

The major pilgrimage sites in Cagayan Valley include the Bangan Hill in Bayombong, Nueva Vizcaya; Dariok Hill in Santiago City, Isabela; the Mount Calvary in Iguig, Cagayan; Our Lady of Guibang in Gamu, Isabela and the miraculous water spring and shrine of Our Lady of Piat in Piat, Cagayan. 

The Mount Calvary re-enactment of Christ’s death and resurrection in Bangan Hill is organized yearly by Bishop Ramon Villena of the diocese of Bayombong.

Dariok Hill in Barangay Balintucatoc, Santiago City is the site of 80 life-size replicas of biblical characters.

Devotees could also trek to another Mount Calvary replica site in Iguig town and the miraculous water spring in the Our Lady of Piat shrine. – With Victor Martin

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