KOTA BARU (THE STAR/ASIA NEWS NETWORK) - Eight more female students of a Malaysian school were struck by what is believed to be "mass hysteria" despite the work of several ustaz and a Chinese bomoh to rid the school of bad spirits.
The girls were suddenly overwhelmed after two hours of reciting Quran verses and special prayers conducted by all the students at its open hall on Sunday (April 17).
SMK Pengkalan Chepa 2 was hit by mass hysteria last Monday, affecting more than 100 students - female and male - and teachers and it was shut down on Thursday.
Several sceptical students said they managed to capture images of a white spectre resembling a pocong (ghostly figure encased in a shroud) at the school canteen, the hall and classrooms on Saturday night.
A student who declined to be named said a female schoolmate who was "possessed" the second time jumped off a flight of stairs at the third floor of the school, but luckily her fall was broken by several male students who were at the bottom of the staircase.
"She was supposed to skip classes today, and I cannot understand why she came to school after being possessed," she said.
Another student, who wanted to be identified only as Ina, said her parents did not allow her to attend school on Sunday after she was struck by hysteria last week.
"I cannot explain how I became possessed, but I could not move and fainted until I was revived by an ustaz," said Ina, who came with her parents to pick up her brother from school.
At a press conference in Kelantan state capital Kota Baru on Thursday, school principal Siti Hawa Mat said the closure of the school in Pengkalan Chepa was necessary to enable the bomoh and ustaz to perform prayers before the school was set to reopen on Sunday.
She said the studies of students were disrupted, and her administration was at their wits' end to find a way to rid the school of "bad spirits".
Students and teachers have claimed to have seen paranormal beings like black spectres, pontianak and pochong.