Nazarene journey: 20 hours, 41 minutes
Ramil Bajo, Rey Galupo (The Philippine Star) - January 10, 2016 - 9:00am

MANILA, Philippines - The annual procession of the Black Nazarene took 20 hours and 41 minutes to arrive at the Quiapo Church in Manila early yesterday.

The procession had an early start at the Quirino Grandstand on Saturday where the ebony statue of Jesus Christ went on display for the traditional “Pahalik” since Friday.

Authorities said some 17 million took part in the annual procession, highlighted by the frenzy of devotees trying to get near and touch the centuries old statue.

Manila police director Chief Superintendent Rolando Nana said this year’s procession was generally peaceful, noting though that one of the devotees died shortly after participating in the religious event.

Nana said the command center gave an estimate of about 17 million devotees attending the event for the whole duration.

He said the traslacion took an hour longer because of the sheer number of people who joined the procession and some last minute changes in the original route.

Instead of going straight to Quezon Boulevard and turning right at Arlegui street from Globo del Oro, the carriage turned left at Gunao Street upon reaching Quezon Boulevard before turning right to Arlegui.

Authorities said at least 800,000 devotees joined the last stages of the procession with 700,000 more gathered at Quiapo Church awaiting the arrival of the Black Nazarene.

The traslacion covered a 6.9-kilometer route starting from Quirino Grandstand at 5:33 a.m. Saturday to the Quiapo Church at 2:02 a.m. yesterday, shorter than last year’s procession which lasted for 21 hours and 35 minutes.

The Philippine Red Cross said at least 1,578 people were treated for injuries and various ailments during the procession.

A total of 793 devotees were given first aid due to dizziness and high blood pressure.

Some 600 people were treated for minor wounds like bruises and abrasions that required dressing while 22 others were taken to hospital for chest pains, acid peptic disease, foot injuries, one emergency childbirth, a fractured leg, abdominal and ankle pain. –Non Alquitran, Edu Punay

ARLEGUI BLACK NAZARENE CHIEF SUPERINTENDENT ROLANDO NANA EDU PUNAY GUNAO STREET JESUS CHRIST NON ALQUITRAN PROCESSION QUEZON BOULEVARD QUIAPO CHURCH QUIRINO GRANDSTAND
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