ABS-CBNnews.com | 01/10/2013 9:52 AM
MANILA, Philippines – The Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) said it collected at least 129 tons of garbage after the procession of the image of the Black Nazarene.
The MMDA and the Manila City government started cleaning up the streets as the devotees moved toward the Minor Basilica of the Black Nazarene from the starting point at the Quirino Grandstand.
When the image entered the basilica before dawn on Thursday, the MMDA collected eight more truckloads of garbage.
The procession of the image ended at around 1:30 a.m., 18 hours after the iconic figure left its starting point at the Quirino Grandstand.
The Philippine National Police estimated that some 9 million devotees participated in one of the country's biggest Catholic events.
At least 1,428 devotees had been given medical attention, according to the Philippine Red Cross.
Last year's procession, considered to be one of the longest in history, lasted about 22 hours after one of the tires of the Black Nazarene's carriage broke down.
Now on its 406th year, the procession commemorated the feast of the "traslacion" or the transfer of the sacred image from the Recollect Church in Intramuros, Manila to the Quiapo Church in 1787.
The statue was brought to Manila by Augustinian priests from Mexico in 1607, and its dark color is believed to have been caused by it being slightly burnt in a fire aboard the Spanish galleon on which it was being transported. – with a report from Noel Alamar, dzMM