Building a Community’s Dream

Khozayma Langco, Camp Bushra Task Force on Camps Transformation member

Khozayma Langco regards himself as a keeper of his father’s legacy.

His father, Usama Ali, who passed away last October, was chairperson of the local chapter of the Joint Task Forces on Camps Transformation (JTFCT) at Barangay Wago in the lakeshore municipality of Lumbayanague in the Province of Lanao del Sur.

A former commander of the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) based at Camp Bushra, his father embraced peace as a path to progress, pushing for projects identified by the JTFCT under a multi-donor funding facility administered by the World Bank as part of the peace process with the Philippine Government.

“My dream for Camp Bushra is for the community to live a normal life,” said Langco, 26, in an interview. “Normal means no more war,” he said.

“Before, we used arms to attain peace. Now, we achieve it through development,” added Langco, who is now also a member of the JTFCT that monitors the implementation of projects under the Mindanao Trust Fund-Reconstruction and Development Project Phase III (MTF-RDP/3).

Under the MTF-RDP/3, two projects – a farmer training center and a health clinic – were constructed in Barangay Wago, a forested village nestled on the hills of Lumbayanague at the edge of the scenic Lanao Lake, which is part of the Moro Islamic Liberation Front’s (MILF) Camp Bushra.

Barangay Wago's newly built Farmers' Training Center with Accommodation
Barangay Wago's newly built Health Facility

The training center has a conference hall for 100 people and four rooms to serve as accommodations for training participants. Training on agriculture, rice and corn production, and community peace-building will be conducted by local and international agencies.

The medical facility, on the other hand, will have a maternity and consultation wards.

Villagers of Wago are mainly rice and corn farmers, as are the family of the late Usama Ali and his wife, a retired schoolteacher. A daughter and eight sons are all MILF members, including Langco.

“I am now a changed man,” said Langco, who has six children.  “I have changed for the good and welfare of all.”

Adapted from Community and Family Services International (16 Feb. 2021). A Dream for Camp Bushra Takes Shape.  URL: https://cfsi.ph/a-dream-for-camp-bushra-takes-shape/ (accessed on 06 June 2021)