Two missing schoolgirls who sparked a social media scare were found safe at a Singapore mall.
The 11-year-old girls, who have not been named, were found Tuesday at the Seletar Mall one day after they were reported missing, leading police to appeal to the public via social media in posts shared more than a thousand times.
The girls were found at about 3pm by Richard Kwok, who posted photos of them in hoodies and wearing disposable face masks, saying that he had reported them to the police.
The father of one of the girls, who wanted to be identified only as Syed, was called in to pick up his daughter Tuesday afternoon.
He told The Straits Times he had assumed his daughter was in school Monday, but when he called the school asking about his daughter, he was told that his 11-year-old and her friend were absent that day.
He reported it to the police, who then posted on Twitter and Facebook about the missing girls. It is not clear which school the girls attend, but a photo circulated of one showed her wearing Fernvale Primary School’s physical education attire. The description of the girls’ clothing in the police tweet also matched that of the school’s uniform.
#sgpoliceappeal Two 11-years-old girls went missing since 30/09/2019 at 0700hrs. Last seen at Seletar Mall, both wearing white top with green checkered skirt. If found, please call 999. Thank you. pic.twitter.com/14emXhgvHx
— SingaporePoliceForce (@SingaporePolice) September 30, 2019
It was not established why the girls had run away, but many speculated online that it was related to stress caused by Singapore’s famously difficult exam. The father, however, said he believes they were mall-hopping around Singapore.
Syed told The Straits Times that the pair had gone from VivoCity at Harbourfront to Changi Airport. He did not say where the girls slept Monday night.
“I felt the whole of Singapore was messaging and helping me,” The Straits Times quoted him as saying.
He added: “There were so many people who supported us through the whole thing, and I want to thank them all.”
The police thanked the public for its role.
“The two 11-year-old girls have been found safe and well,” the force tweeted at about 4pm yesterday. “Thank you for your assistance.”
More news from the Little Red Dot at Coconuts.co/Singapore.
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This article, Missing schoolgirls spotted at Seletar Mall after case goes viral, originally appeared on Coconuts, Asia's leading alternative media company. Want more Coconuts? Sign up for our newsletters!