Mali instability leads to economic hardship
4 January 2013 Last updated at 07:09 GMT
Months of instability have hit Mali's economy hard since the country's president was overthrown in a coup last March.
The resulting power vacuum has seen Islamist militants take control of the north with 400,000 civilians forced to flee.
Efforts are underway by the regional bloc, Ecowas, to send troops to help Mali's government retake the region, but for many civilians the intervention will come too late.
Chakuchanya Harawa reports.