River Diamonds plc
("River Diamonds" or "the Company")
SAMPLING RESULTS FROM PANGUMA CONCESSION, SIERRA LEONE
River Diamonds today announces that it has received encouraging results from a third mini bulk sample carried out by the Company at the Panguma Concession in Sierra Leone, a joint venture with African Precious Minerals.
This sample of kimberlitic material was excavated from a pit on the Talama Dyke roughly 1 kilometre south-east of Panguma Town and resulted in the recovery of 1.365 carats of diamonds, consisting of 13 stones, from 1.875 tonnes of kimberlite. The largest diamond recovered was a 0.46 carat stone. The average size of the stones recovered was 0.10 of a carat. The pit from which the sample was taken has been excavated to a depth of 8 metres and the width of the dyke at this depth is between 40 centimetres and 56 centimetres.
With the addition of this sample, River Diamonds has recovered 3.945 carats of diamonds from 3.875 tonnes, along the main Talama Dyke. A table summarising the mini bulk sampling to date is shown below:
Tonnes of kimberlite
Diamonds recovered (carats)
Stones recovered (num)
Average size (carats)
Largest diamond (carats)
*As announced 20 April 2006
River Diamonds is continuing with its programme of mini bulk samples, in which it envisages taking a further 7 samples from the dykes in the Panguma Concession and will report the results when they become available.
River Diamonds has prepared access and drilling platforms around the initial target of the kimberlitic blow in the north-east of the license area. A drilling contractor is currently mobilising one drill rig to the Panguma Concession with the intention of commencing the initial phase of drilling by the end of July. The drilling contractor has been delayed by logistical issues which are currently being experienced across the mining industry as a whole.
Colin Orr Ewing, Executive Chairman of River Diamonds, commented, "We are extremely pleased with the results obtained from our third sub-surface sample of the Panguma Dykes. This sample demonstrates an encouraging diamond size distribution, and in addition shows consistency of the amount of diamonds recovered along the strike of the dyke."
The Panguma Concession is approximately 230 kilometres north-east of Freetown and covers approximately 54 square kilometres in eastern Sierra Leone. It is also approximately 50 kilometres from Koidu, where the first hard rock diamond mine in Sierra Leone is being developed. As set out in a review commissioned by the Company and undertaken by the Company's Competent Person, CSA in May 2005, the Panguma licence adjoins the Tongo diamond field, which hosts kimberlitic dykes that are, in terms of diamond grade and quality, among the highest in the world. Mining on the adjoining Tongo lease has produced grades of 150 carats per hundred tones ("cpht"), 268cpht and 100cpht on three separate dykes. The review also states that a number of diamondiferous dykes, extending from Tongo, were discovered within the Panguma Concession in the 1960's and suggests that the previously identified Talama kimberlite dyke system within the Panguma Concession comprises two main dykes, one of which could potentially be up to 4 kilometres in length.
Kiran Morzaria B.Eng (ACSM), (FGS), MBA, has reviewed the information contained in this announcement. Kiran holds a Bachelor of Engineering (Industrial Geology) from the Camborne School of Mines and an MBA (Finance) from CASS Business School. Kiran is the Finance Director of River Diamonds.
Colin Orr-Ewing, Executive Chairman
Cathy Malins / Annabel Leather
Peter Jackson/ Philip Haydn-Slater
River Diamonds plc
W.H. Ireland Limited
Tel: 020 7352 4117
Tel: 020 7493 3713
Tel: 020 7220 1666
Background information on River Diamonds plc
River Diamonds is a UK-based international diamond exploration and mining company with current operations in Brazil and Sierra Leone. Between 1730 and 1870, Brazil was the world leader in diamond production. Total production is estimated to have been in excess of 15 million carats from recorded history to the present day. Brazil currently ranks tenth in the world with an annual diamond production of approximately 700,000 carats. Sierra Leone is also renowned for the high quality of its diamonds that have been recovered, as well the large stones that have been discovered in the alluvial deposits - the largest to date being the 969.8 carat 'Star of Sierra Leone'.
River Diamonds' strategy is to build a portfolio comprising early and advanced large scale exploration projects that have the potential to yield significant reserves of gem quality diamonds. In the short to medium term, the Company is focused on developing the current portfolio of diamond projects it holds in Brazil and Sierra Leone. It will also seek to identify and acquire additional areas where they have the potential to add shareholder value and to meet the Company's key performance targets.
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River Diamonds plc