A six-day search for two missing young women led police to a Boland town, one hour outside Cape Town.
Aneekah Ismail, 23, and her 16-year-old friend Kelly Moses were found “unharmed” in Worcester.
It is believed the two met up with a family a friend in the dorp, who then notified their parents.
Now members of the public, some who helped in the search, believe their efforts were a waste of time, and are angry at the families who refuse to reveal the circumstances around the women’s safe return.
The Daily Voice can reveal the two friends:
- Were “collected” by members of the Mitchells Plain police missing person’s unit late on Tuesday night.
- Sent SMS messages to their families to say they were OK.
- And that Aneekah’s Facebook account was closed two months ago; she had also changed her cellphone number.
Early yesterday morning, the two were interviewed by Mitchells Plain police before being whisked off by their families.
Aneekah is from Athlone and Kelly is from Eastridge in Mitchells Plain.
Aneekah’s family made a statement on Facebook yesterday, stating that they had been found.
However, the family has remained mum over details, and appealed for people to “respect their privacy”.
Both families refused to speak to media yesterday.
Police spokesperson, Captain FC Van Wyk, confirmed the duo were found.
“The missing girls were found last night [Tuesday] in Worcester. They are unharmed and have been reunited with their families.”
Dessie Rechner, the director of missing persons group The Pink Ladies, confirmed the girls were being “interviewed by the police”.
Neither she nor the police would give any more details.
A source close to the investigation said the whole saga was “een groot gemors” but wouldn’t reveal any more.
The source also said police had discovered that Aneekah’s Facebook account had been shut down in April, and that she recently changed her cellphone number.
Aneekah, who recently graduated from university, and Kelly, a Grade 10 pupil, went missing last Thursday.
Aneekah had picked up Kelly at her home in Eastridge in her purple Ford Fiesta, and drove her to Oval North High School in Beacon Valley where she was to collect her end of term report, but the teacher had not been present.
They left and weren’t seen again.
The two befriended each other last year December and have been “very close” since then, according to Kelly’s family.
Aneekah even visited Kelly’s school and is known to her classmates and friends.
After they were reported missing, Mitchells Plain community members joined in the search, scouring nearby Wolfgat Nature Reserve after receiving information that the girls’ bodies had been dumped there.
There were also rumours that the girls had run away to join Isis (Islamic State).
Aneekah’s father Shafiek Ismail told the Daily Voice “they could not rule out” the possibility of a link to the terror group, known for recruiting young women as brides for its soldiers.
The dad also revealed that they had been getting text messages from Aneekah over the weekend, saying she and Kelly were safe and that their families “should not stress” about them.
Shafiek said they sent messages back to the meisies, urging them to come home.
Neither Shafiek, nor Kelly’s mother Ghaleema Eldeib, 36, could be reached for comment yesterday.
Angry Facebook user Nabeweyah Nabz Kader, who had been part of the search, commented: “I agree 100%… we asked around too, even the drug addicts were searching too! And now it’s privacy… just saying.”
Isa Mo Reza agreed: “The community at large sacrifice their time and brave the cold to search for their missing persons and when they found, the family want us to respect their privacy.”
Rizqah Losper added: “These kids are clearly attention seekers … A child and adult are best friends? They probably went on a holiday or ran away. They need a good wake-up call after wasting so much resources. Now the family wants to keep things secret. Makes me wonder if they were to be in real danger.”