JOHANNESBURG (miningweekly.com) – Aim-listed GoldStone Resources has completed a deep trenching programme – the first step of a pit definition programme – on the Akrokerri licence, in Ghana.
The trenching was undertaken to define the extent of the mineralisation in the near-surface oxide zone of the known deposit, and to augment the findings from the continued review by the company of the historical database for the Homase and Akrokerri licences.
The company dug four trenches, two in each of the proposed pits, on the southern part of the current resource and along strike from the old Homase pit, which were identified as having a high potential for an initial openpit operation for heap-leach production within the oxide zone.
The trenches were dug to a depth of 7 m and channel samples were taken near the bottom of each trench in 1 m consolidated intervals.
The trenches showed economic intersections of up to 14 m true width, with grades of up to 4.5 g/t of gold.
Both widths and grades were above the company's expectation, exceeding the intersections of nearby drill holes by about 20%.
“This indicates the potential for increased gold content in the upper oxide zone. The trenching also indicates that the zones have a free digging potential, which will reduce production costs considerably if the material is shown to be consistent,” the company said in a statement on Thursday.
Further trenching is now planned to assess the extent of the mineralised zone within the Akrokerri licence.
GoldStone is also conducting a pit definition reverse circulation drilling programme within the proposed pits.
The company, meanwhile, continues to review its portfolio and is in the process of renewing its licences in both Senegal and Ghana but is considering the sale or relinquishment of its licences in Gabon.
In respect to Ghana, all requisite documents have been submitted to the Ghanaian Minerals Commission for both Akrokerri and Homase. The company said that it has received confirmation that the licences are awaiting signature from the Minister of Mines.
The current drilling and trenching will facilitate the determining of the potential pit design for the proposed Akrokerri pits and will provide the necessary platform for proceeding with an application to the government of Ghana for a mining permit, following the extension of the licences.