Our students were possessed and disturbed [by these spirits]. We are not sure why it happened. We don't know what it is that affected us.
A staff member at SMK Pengkalan Chepa 2 in Kota Bharu in the Kelantan state of Malaysia explained to the media what prompted the school to be shut down. The school remained closed as a photograph circulated of what appeared to be a dark figure in a hallway, then stayed closed instead of reopening when screams were heard by reporters coming from the supposedly vacant building and a shaman claimed it might be a female vampire.
Students and teachers began reporting sightings of a “black figure” on Monday, April 11th. The sightings continued for two days and a panic affecting over 100 people caused officials to shut the school down. While some attributed it to mass hysteria, one teacher wasn’t so sure.
When I was holding one of the pupils, my arms felt extraordinarily heavy. I recited the istighfar. Things were truly out of control at the time. But after the pupil recovered and went home, I then felt as though someone was hanging onto the left side of my body. I saw flashes of black, like a black figure.
School officials brought in Islamic religious leaders to hold prayer sessions. They attempted to reopen it on Sunday April 17th but screams were heard in the building by students as well as reporters and photographers covering the event. That forced them to bring in a bomoh – a Malay shaman – to exorcise the school. He believed the spirits included a pontianak - a female vampiric ghost – and a pocong – the ghost of a dead person trapped in its shroud – that had been in the school for years and will return once things are back to normal.
Robert Bartholomew, a sociologist and expert in Malaysian mass hysteria, called it a “textbook” case.
Malays are susceptible because of their belief in an array of spirits.
Spirits? Female vampire? Mass hysteria? Big test on Tuesday? As of this writing, the school remains closed, the students remained panicked and the spirits – real or alleged - just remain.