Politicians Urged Not to Use Black Nazarene Feast to Campaign for 2010 Polls

Manila. Politicians that are hoping to use the popular feast of the Black Nazarene to gain political mileage should better think twice or draw the public ire for their opportunist political practice.

The EcoWaste Coalition, an environmental group that is campaigning for eco-friendly 2010 polls, spoke against thinly veiled political propaganda as millions of devotees, many of whom are citizens of voting age, prepare to gather en masse in Quiapo to perform their
religious vows.

“We request all well-meaning politicians, especially those seeking elective posts in May 2010, to spare the Feast of the Black Nazarene of blatant self-promotion and abstain from putting up ‘happy fiesta’ tarpaulin banners,” said Manny Calonzo, President, EcoWaste Coalition.

“These banners are totally unnecessary and only end up as ugly trash if not duly removed, reused or recycled,” he added.

With pilgrims expected to arrive in record numbers, the Quiapo district is now festooned with brightly colored tarpaulins containing “happy fiesta” greetings from an assortment of politicians.

Msgr. Jose Clemente Ignacio, Rector and Parish Priest of the Minor Basilica of the Black Nazarene, had earlier reminded politicians not to use the feast for political campaigning.

“Medyo sensitive po tayo dito at sinasabi rin ng ating mahal na Cardinal sana itong kapistahan ng Poong Nazareno ay hindi magamit sa pulitika,” Msgr. Ignacio said in a televised interview.

Instead of wasting resources for out of place political propaganda, the EcoWaste Coalition asked politicians to quietly pay homage to the greatly revered Black Nazarene and desist from using the feast to satisfy political ends.

Politicians who are really keen to offer their services for the good of the people and the environment can do more than hanging “happy fiesta” banners, the EcoWaste Coalition emphasized.

According to the group, politicians can help in post-fiesta cleanup of littered streets, take down unsightly buntings and banners, support barangay-level enforcement of ecological solid waste
management and contribute to the long-term rehabilitation and development of the Quiapo district.


Here’s the link to the TV interview with Msgr. Jose Clemente Ignacio: