Monday, March 11, 2013

(NYASATIMES MW) Diamond deposits found in Bikita

Diamond deposits found in Bikita
11/03/2013 00:00:00
by Staff Reporter

Gift Chimanikire, the deputy mines minister, said Nan Jiang Africa Resources Ltd had now submitted a new application for a licence to mine diamonds following the find.

Chimanikire said four kimberlite pipes had been discovered at Devuli Ranch in the Budzi communal area – on the border with Manicaland Province which is believed to hold some of the world’s biggest diamond deposits.

Kimberlite pipes – named after Kimberley in South Africa where they were first found – are believed to have developed from powerful magma eruptions between 1,100 million and 20 million­ years ago.

In Marange, Manicaland, the diamond deposits are mainly alluvial – diamonds that originate in kimberlite pipes but get moved by geological activity into river beds and even flat surfaces.

Chimanikire said a team from the ministry had been to Bikita and had prepared a report of an analysis of the type of diamonds found and their estimated value. This information will be used in considering Nan Jiang Africa Resources’ application.

The company has reportedly hired over 100 workers and brought in heavy mining equipment. The area where the diamonds were discovered is now patrolled by armed guards.
But Chimanikire warned Nan Jiang they could face sanctions if they begin mining before a licence is granted.

The company, meanwhile, has been active in the local community – helping villagers draw water from Devure River for irrigation.

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