[Ghosts] NUS Spooky Encounters

Warning: This article is not for the faint-hearted.

As a university student, many a time we have to stay on campus until late at night and walk home alone. Some of us who are ‘sensitive’ enough might feel goose bumps while walking in some areas in campus at night. It is not a secret that almost every place has their unique ghost stories to tell. NUS is no exception. The RIDGE brings you a few of the most infamous ghost stories and spooky places in NUS from various sources.


The Headless Ghost

A headless ghost is commonly seen roaming around various spots in NUS Campus. Best known as Pontianak in Malay, the headless lady was once seen crawling on a ceiling of one of the canteens in NUS Kent Ridge Campus. Besides various sightings of Pontianak in Kent Ridge Campus, one of the most infamous stories occurred at the Bukit Timah Campus (BTC).

In 2009, NUS decided to put up a signboard warning people about the headless ghost wandering around the BTC after the ghost was exposed in the Sin Chew Daily. Some witnesses confirmed the existence of the headless ghost dressed in all white around the upper quadrant of Federal Building. Along with the headless ghost, there are other spirits which are acknowledged through the warning. Lights were switched on and off repeatedly while some Japanese soldiers were believed to briskly march up and down the corridors. In some classrooms, chairs and tables were thrown about at night.

There was also a story about a mystic elevator that operated on its own. Regarding the notice placed, a university spokesman, as quoted in AsiaOne, said that the signboard was one of nine signboards placed along Campus Heritage Trail that aimed to tell the history and major events reported in the campus in the past to help visitors know more about the university.


The Haunted Halls

The old Kent Ridge Halls building located in Kent Ridge Crescent was once haunted by a female spirit in search of her child. At night, some people would hear long, sorrowful wails and cries. Rumour has it that the hall office hired a Chinese shaman to stop the wailings. A door that opened up to the place of the spirit’s lost child was then built as instructed by the shaman.

The steep slope surrounding King Edward VII Halls was also believed to be haunted. There are various versions of the ghost story. It is believed that an NUS undergraduate once slipped and fell to his/her death on the slope.  Another version involved an undergarment thief who ran down the slope to escape the authorities and also ended up falling to his death.


South Buona Vista Road

Years back, a driver witnessed a ghostly sighting on South Buona Vista Road located near NUHS and Kent Ridge MRT. The driver was known to be a careful driver and not drunk that night. She was aware of some dangerous bends along the road. As she was reaching one of the bends, she slowed down when a lady suddenly appeared in the middle of the dark lane. She did not manage to stop her car and drove straight into the lady. She quickly stopped the car and the driver of a vehicle behind her brought a flashlight and went down the road to help them. Neither of the drivers could find the victim.


The Woman in Blue

Numerous janitors witnessed a woman dressed in blue regularly ‘visiting’ the female toilet on level three of the Oei Tiong Ham block, Bukit Timah Campus, at night. The janitor noticed strange sound from an occupied cubicle only to find that a woman with long and flowy blue skirt emerged from the cubicle after some time. Upon re-entering the toilet after a while, the janitor found the woman had vanished out of the blue.

I sincerely apologize for making your night jogs around the school several times scarier than before (trust me; it is more frightening to write the article). On the bright side, this can be your excuse not to stay on campus late at night and get a good night’s sleep at home instead.


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Teresa Widodo
Teresa is a National University of Singapore undergraduate majoring in applied chemistry. Writing, daydreaming and TV series are her obsessions. Her long-term goal is to be able to share her thoughts to the whole world.