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Contractor|Exploration|Gold|Mining|PROJECT|Projects|Resources|System|Trucks|Underground|Drilling|Operations
Contractor|Exploration|Gold|Mining|PROJECT|Projects|Resources|System|Trucks|Underground|Drilling|Operations
contractor|exploration|gold|mining|project|projects|resources|system|trucks|underground|drilling|operations

Thor Explorations’ Segilola mine delivered 20 629 oz of gold in the first quarter

17th April 2023

By: Donna Slater

Features Deputy Editor and Chief Photographer

     

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Aim- and TSX-V-listed gold explorer and miner Thor Explorations, which owns and operates the Segilola gold mine, in Nigeria, produced 20 629 oz of gold in the first quarter of this year at an average grade of 2.95 g/t.

During the period, mined and processed ore totalled 198 425 t and 231 001 t, respectively, while the average mine head grade was 2.85 g/t and processed grade 2.95 g/t, blended from mining and existing stockpiles.

Gold production during the quarter was about 5% lower than planned owing to lower production drilling rates as a result of more challenging ground conditions at the upper levels of the western push-back.

About 25% of total material mined and 31% of ore mined during the period was from lower-grade areas, which were originally planned to be mined later in the year. Mining of this area has now been mostly completed and the deficit is expected to be recovered later in the year as operations realign with the 2023 mine plan.

In addition, towards period’s end, two additional production drill rigs and 14 new haul trucks were imported by the mining contractor to prepare for the planned ramp-up in production over the next 12 months. The drilling rigs have been commissioned and are now in operation and the haul trucks have been released from the Lagos port.

At Segilola, Thor president and CEO Segun Lawson says, the planned west wall push-back is progressing and the company is well positioned for an increase in gold production following its completion late in the second quarter, as the mine head grade improves over the next three to six months.

Further, with exploration projects in Nigeria, Senegal and Burkina Faso, Thor identified a new high-grade quartz vein system within 15 km of its Nigeria-based Segilola project, with multiple high-grade drillhole intercepts including a 1 m mineralised zone grading 310 g/t of gold – equating to 10 oz/t gold.

Exploration during the period under review at the Senegal-based Douta project resulted in the project’s mineral resource estimate (MRE) increasing by 144% on its 2022 maiden MRE, to about 1.78-million ounces of gold.

The Douta resource – supported by 64 567 m of drilling – is constrained within enhanced pit shells, comprising an initial indicated mineral resource of 20.2-million tonnes, grading 1.3 g/t for 874 900 oz of gold.

Douta’s inferred mineral resource totals 24.1-million tonnes, grading 1.2 g/t for 909 400 oz gold.

The updated Douta resource encompasses the Makosa, Makosa Tail and the recently-discovered Sambara prospects – all of which remain open along strike and down dip.

Thor notes that drilling is ongoing at Douta, with a further 40 000 m programme to be completed this year, consisting of diamond drilling and reverse circulation drilling.

Going forward, Thor is maintaining its 2023 production guidance range at between 85 000 oz and 95 000 oz of gold, weighted towards the second half of the year.

Before the end of the first half, Thor is also aiming to resume drilling at Segilola, with the aim of increasing resources for potential future transition to underground operation and mine life extension.

The company also intends to conduct step-out drilling at Douta, further increasing existing resources, and to continue drilling at Segilola regional targets.

An initial programme at Thor’s new Malete prospect will see completion of the Douta preliminary feasibility study in the fourth quarter, the applications for and acquisition of identified prospective exploration properties in Nigeria, and a continuation of exploration programmes across the exploration portfolio in Nigeria.

“The 2023 MRE at Douta has more than doubled the contained gold within the Douta permit to over 1.7-million ounces, with the indicated resource component of the resource alone exceeding 870 000 oz of gold. This is an excellent result and we are targeting further growth of the total resource as we proceed with a further 40 000 m of drilling over the course of the year.

“We have also continued to evaluate potential opportunities to leverage our technical capabilities and first mover advantage in Nigeria and I look forward to presenting our progress in this respect in the second quarter,” says Lawson.

Edited by Chanel de Bruyn
Creamer Media Senior Deputy Editor Online

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