Filipinos visited the tombs of their departed loved ones in different cemeteries across the country in the observance of All Saints' Day, or locally known as Undas, on Wednesday.
In Manila North Cemetery, long lines were seen at the entrance of the place as early as 7 a.m., according to Mariz Umali's report on Unang Balita.
Long lines were also observed inside the cemetery as some visitors, mostly senior citizens and persons with disabilities, rode electric tricycles to reach the tombs of their loved ones.
Interviewed on Unang Balita, Manila Police District (MPD) chief Police Colonel Arnold Thomas Ibay said a total of 80,000 visitors were recorded on Tuesday. He said they are expecting the number to swell on Wednesday.
In Pasay Public Cemetery, the management said an estimated 10,000 to 15,000 people are expected to visit the place within the day, according to a separate Unang Balita report by Bam Alegre.
Personnel from the local government unit and police have been deployed to manage security in the area as well as watch out for illegal parking.
Meanwhile, in Tugatog Public Cemetery in Malabon, visitors could only light a candle at the “Wall of Remembrance“ as the cemetery was still under renovation, according to Darlene Cay's report.
The remains buried in the cemetery have been removed from their tombs and kept in a safe place, which is confidential, while the renovation is ongoing, the local government said.
Recently, a portion of the cemetery has been opened to the public with the inauguration of the “Wall of Remembrance” or walls with the names of the buried individuals written on them.
Some of the visitors were complaining about the setup as they preferred the traditional visitation to the tombs, while some preferred it over the previous setup.
The cemetery has been closed to the public since 2021 due to the renovation.
Rainshowers were also experienced in Tugatog Public Cemetery on the day of Undas, the report said.
In Concepcion Pequeña Public Cemetery in Naga City, a map was displayed inside to prevent visitors from getting lost, GMA Regional TV Balitang Bicolandia’s Cris Novelo reported.
The map will serve as the guide for visitors for the direction to the tombs of their loved ones.
A traffic rerouting scheme that will be implemented starting Wednesday noon is expected to cause heavy traffic in the area.
In Cagayan de Oro City Memorial Park, some visitors also went to the cemetery early in the morning, according to a report of GMA Regional TV One Mindanao’s Cyril Chaves.
Strict inspections were done to confiscate prohibited items from the visitors at the entrance. Private vehicles were not allowed inside the cemetery's premises.
Meanwhile, in Divisoria in Manila, many people went to stores first to buy candles before visiting the cemeteries, according to James Agustin's report.
They said the prices of candles in Divisoria are cheaper compared to the ones being sold near cemeteries.
Among the best-selling candles were vigil and esperma candles.
- The following are the prices for different kinds of candles in Divisoria:
- six pieces of vigil candles - P32 to P91
- 20 small esperma candles - P52
- two bug esperma candles - P152
- six pieces of spiral candles - P75 to P85
- glass candle - P60 to P120
- smokeless glass candle - P90 to P120
- two pieces of jelly candles - P90
- “gulaman” candle - P25
Philippine National Police (PNP) spokesperson Police Colonel Jean Fajardo on Tuesday cautioned the public against common crimes during the observance of All Saints' and All Souls' Days.
“Normally po kapag ganitong malaki iyong volume ng mga tao ay theft, salisi, at physical injury,” she said at a news conference when asked about the common crimes during All Saints’ and All Souls’ Days.
(Normally, when there is a huge volume of people like during this occasion, the common crimes are theft, salisi, and physical injury.)
Around 27,000 PNP personnel have been deployed nationwide to provide security on Undas. —Joviland Rita/KBK, GMA Integrated News