2nd day of Iglesia Ni Cristo protest causes heavy traffic on Edsa
On its second day of protest, Iglesia Ni Cristo members converged on the northbound lane of Edsa near the Edsa Shrine, creating massive traffic on Friday night.
Vehicles had difficulty crossing intersections at Ortigas Avenue and Shaw Boulevard as INC protesters blocked the major thoroughfares.
The National Capital Region Police Office placed the crowd estimate at the corner of Edsa and Ortigas Avenue to be at 1,500 people as of 11 pm Friday.
Those gathered at the intersection of Edsa and Shaw Boulevard were estimated to be at 3,000.
There were no more protesters in front of the Department of Justice in Manila, police said.
The NCRPO has been on full alert as of 6 pm Friday.
Chief Supt. Joel Pagdilao, NCRPO director, said they have also activated Task Force Manila Shield as the rallies entered its second day.
Task Force Manila Shield is a complex security arrangement of the Philippine National Police to secure Metro Manila in events of massive demonstrations.
It was last activated in 2014 during the anti-pork barrel rallies in Luneta.
About a thousand INC members gathered near the Edsa Shrine on the northbound lane of Edsa on Friday night, repeatedly chanting “INC!” and “Hustisya!”
The protesters also hoisted placards and banners demanding justice and for the government to leave their church and faith alone.
Shortly before 9 pm, the INC members attempted to march towards the People Power Monument but retreated after a hundred meters, barely crossing the intersection of Edsa and Ortigas Ave.
They have yet to hold a formal program although they have already blocked the northbound lane of Edsa, making it impassable to all vehicles.
Policemen deployed at the Edsa Shrine said they were under orders to keep the INC members out of the Catholic-run shrine.
They did not wield their usual gear of truncheons and shields, which are basic equipment of anti-riot cops.
“We don’t know if we will be given equipment. We were just told to keep them out,” a policeman said. Julie Aurelio, TVJ
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