As TB, Aids and heroin abuse run rife , one girl , 16 -year -old Princess Chea , told Daily Mirror
“ I’ve been sleeping here in the graveyard for five years.
“ There is no other option, my parents both died after the civil war. There was nobody to protect or look after me .
It is safe in here, in the tombs , where nobody dare come to hurt us .”
Princess was just 10 when she first sold herself to old men on the streets of downtown Monrovia, who would pay her £ 1 .40 for sex .With tears in her hollow , yellowing eyes , she said :
“ I’ve been working as a prostitute for six years now. I am not happy at all, but I have nobody to turn to.
“ Every day I sleep with up to 10 older men . I have been lucky never to have got pregnant – and I am not afraid of Aids because hopefully God will protect me .”
When Ebola ravaged the country, all she could do was carry on, and pray .
She added: “ I smoke cocaine to take away the pain while praying every single day that I can one day leave my grave and perhaps even go to school .”
Princess , who shares her dug-out refuge with friend Joshua Williams , 17, is one of the many underage girls in Monrovia who “ cut jopu” , or hustle on the side of the street for goods or money .
Another friend of Princess , emaciated Daniel Johnson, 12, feels he is lucky to have a place among the skeletons after Ebola wiped out his close family last year .
Soccer -mad Daniel said : “ I feel safe here with the spirits to watch over me . We have nobody else, and nothing else. ”