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TORONTO and LONDON, March 6 /CNW/ - SouthernEra Diamonds Inc. (TSX: SDM,
AIM: SRE;) today reported that the first bulk sampling trench at its 100%
owned Badibanga Alluvial Diamond Project ("Badibanga") in the Democratic
Republic of Congo ("DRC") has been completed returning an average recovered
grade of 2.00 carats per cubic meter (ct/m(3)).
The diamond processing plant recovered a total of 3,124 diamonds totaling
348.11 carats from 174 cubic meters (m(3)) of targeted alluvial basal gravel
from this first sample. The largest recovered diamond was 1.75ct. The initial
program is continuing with the objective of extracting a representative parcel
(2000 carats) for diamond valuation purposes.
Badibanga is one of SouthernEra's two large alluvial diamond projects and
is located in Kasai Oriental Province approximately 60 km to the northwest of
the producing Mbuji-Mayi Kimberlite diamond region. Historical reports
indicate that, between 1926 and 1955, the Belgian mining companies Forminiere,
E.K.L. and Socieite de Miniere du Beceka mined in excess of 194 million carats
from the area within and adjacent to SouthernEra's permits.
The initial bulk sample program is targeting an alluvial flats area,
named Flats D-E and F within an area historically termed by Forminiere as the
"Lubi-Lukula Triangle". SouthernEra has extracted and processed a total of 174
m(3) of basal gravel from the first bulk sample trench (Lb51b) within Flat F.
Trench Lb51b has overburden consisting of clay-rich top-soil (~0.5m),
unconsolidated white sand (max 2m), non diamond-bearing "travel gravel"
(~0.6m), followed by 0.5m to 1.5m of diamond-bearing basal gravel, containing
cobbles and boulders.
In addition to the extraction of the 2,000 carats for diamond valuation
purposes, smaller bulk-sample pits averaging 10m x 10m in size have been
positioned at 40m intervals along 200m spaced lines across the rest of the
same flat (Flat F) and will be sampled in the coming months. This sampling
will assist in recording accurate geological information for the rest of the
flats, as well as highlight any grade or stone-size changes across the flats.
The 2,000 carat bulk sample is phase one of the Badibanga program and is
expected to be completed in the second quarter of 2007. Based on positive
results from phase one the second phase will consist of methodical pitting and
drilling to increase confidence levels in the resource and facilitate a
decision to mine.
President and CEO Alasdair MacPhee said, "The initial results are
extremely encouraging and have already gone a long way in confirming the
reliability of the historical grade data received late in 2006. Our objective
is not one of detailed resource definition but to move this project into
production and generate cashflow as soon as possible. "
Technical reports prepared by the Royal Museum for Central Africa
("RMCA"), Department of Geology and Mineralogy, Tervuren, Belgium, from
Forminiere exploration reports, illustrated the presence of historical
non-43-101 compliant, unmined, diamond deposits totaling 3.49 million carats
within the Lubi-Lukula Triangle. This deposit is reported in a 1951 reserve
table that does not report volume and grade data but instead reports on
estimated carats within each alluvial flat. These reserves do not conform to
the CIM definition standards on mineral resources and mineral reserves.
Included in the technical report is a historical map showing pit sample
locations with the recovered diamond grade from each pit. The map indicates
that the average diamond grades in the alluvial flats approximate 1 ct/m(3)
with average grades of individual flats on the Lubi River as high as 1.7
ct/m(3). The highest individual sample pit was historically documented at
SouthernEra has not classified the historical estimates as current
mineral resources/reserves and is not treating the historical data as mineral
resources/reserves. The reader is warned that historical estimates and current
studies on historical reports should not be relied upon.
Badibanga photographs have been posted on SouthernEra's website.
SouthernEra is also evaluating a second alluvial project area in the DRC.
The 70% owned Tshikapa alluvial diamond project is underway in joint venture
with two local companies.
Mr. Uwe Naeher, Professional Geologist and SouthernEra's Western
Exploration Manager, is the qualified person, under NI 43-101, responsible for
the technical information in this release. Mr. Naeher has reviewed the
contents of this release.
SouthernEra Diamonds is one of Canada's fully integrated diamond
companies with extensive alluvial and kimberlite diamond exploration in the
DRC as well as other countries including Canada and South Africa. The Company
also holds the Klipspringer Diamond Mine in South Africa and maintains an 18
percent free-carried interest in the Camafuca Diamond Project in Angola.
Some statements contained in this news release are forward-looking and,
therefore, involve uncertainties or risks that could cause actual results to
differ materially. Such forward-looking statements include comments regarding
exploration work. Actual results could differ materially from those
anticipated. The Company disclaims any obligation to update forward-looking
For further information:
For further information: SouthernEra Diamonds Inc., Howard Bird, Senior
Vice President Exploration or Sharon Allan, Investor Relations, Telephone:
(416) 359-9282, Fax: (416) 359-9141, E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org,
www.southernera.com, London: 4C-Burvale, Carina Corbett, Director, Telephone:
++44 (0) 207-7559-6710, Fax: ++44 (0) 207-7559-6701, Email: