Sulu: A Lost Paradise

Berwina Timbang, a grade six student in Sultan Jamalul Kiram Elementary School in Maimbung, Sulu, was diligently listening to her English teacher when I first saw her. I was in Sulu then for a one-day news coverage. Occasionally, she would glance outside the window, her eyes innocent and her face hopeful. In a class of…

Finding Peace in Zamboanga City

The plane ride to Zamboanga was partly different from my previous travels: no overly excited, loud tourists taking selfies and no foreigners. I can tell that the passengers were mostly locals because they were speaking Chavacano, the city’s Spanish-based local dialect. When the plane landed in Zamboanga, it meant many things for the group I was traveling…

The Siege of Zamboanga’s Youngsters by Makoi Popioco

A little boy cowered behind an overturned wooden chair, avoiding gunfire. The other boy breathed heavily, he dashed his small feet forward and with his frail hands, he fired. The boy hiding behind the chair got shot, fell down, and played dead. I raised my hand, pointed my index finger, pulled the invisible trigger in my thumb,…