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West African reports high-grade gold mineralisation at Burkina Faso deposit

17th April 2024

By: Sabrina Jardim

Creamer Media Online Writer

     

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ASX-listed unhedged gold mining company West African Resources has reported high-grade gold mineralisation from recent infill underground diamond drilling within the main lode at the M1 South (M1S) at its Sanbrado gold operations, in Burkina Faso.

Results from infill diamond drilling at M1S include ­24 m at 55.79 g/t gold; 28.5 m at 37.03 g/t gold; 28 m at 28.52 g/t gold; 22.5 m at 32.98 g/t gold; and 25 m at 29.44 g/t gold.

“Infill drilling has confirmed the grade and tenor of high-grade areas of the M1S resource and strengthens confidence in 2024 production and our ten-year production plan,” says West African executive chairperson Richard Hyde.

Regarding M1S infill drilling, a total of 100 holes for 13 398 m of stope definition drilling has been completed at the M1S Underground targeting mineralisation within stoping panel five between the 1 795 metre relative level (mRL) and the 1 695 mRL.

The company says the ore development of panel five started in the first quarter and will provide the majority of development ore for this year’s mine plan. Stoping activities in panel five are expected to commence in the 2025 financial year, as per the ten-year mine plan.

Moreover, a further 2 500 m of infill drilling is planned to target the northern shoots of M1S between the 1 920 mRL and the 1 845 mRL.

The company notes that additional drilling is in preparation for the start of ore development in the second half of this year. Results are expected to be reported in the third quarter of this calendar year, but recent results returned 9.5 m at 81.91 g/t gold outside ore reserves.

Meanwhile, a  total of 18 000 m of resource definition drilling is planned at M1S targeting inferred mineral resources between the 1 600 mRL and the 1 350 mRL.

At the end of the first quarter of this calendar year, the 1 770 drill drive was 70% complete, with drilling to start in the second quarter and be completed by the end of the calendar year.

The company says the drill programme is aimed at converting up to 400 000 oz of gold from an inferred mineral resource classification to indicated mineral resource. Results from the resource conversion programme are expected to be released from the third quarter of this calendar year onwards.

KIAKA SURFACE GRADE CONTROL

Meanwhile, during the first quarter, surface grade control drilling started at the Kiaka gold project, also in Burkina Faso, with an initial 130 000 m programme targeting the top 20 m of resources, which will form the first six months of openpit mining production.

Currently, one rig is operating a double shift, with a second rig to mobilise to site in the coming weeks.

Drilling is currently focused on the Kiaka Centre and South pits to align with the ramp-up of the construction earthworks. This is to provide waste rock for the construction of the tailings facility and run-of-mine pads.

West African says Kiaka South is also prioritised in the early years of the mine plan owing to its higher grade. The central pit will also be used as additional water storage capacity for mine and processing operations.

Grade control of the main pit is planned for the second half of this year, and results from the Kiaka grade control drilling are expected to be released from the third quarter.

“[West African] is on track to produce four-million ounces over the next decade, with annual production set to peak in 2029 at 473 000 oz of gold. Our unhedged resources now stand at 12.8-million ounces and ore reserves at 6.1-million ounces of gold,” says Hyde.

Edited by Chanel de Bruyn
Creamer Media Senior Deputy Editor Online

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