Photo by Morten Often
The gold in the Akobo region was first discovered during the Italian occupation of Ethiopia 1936-1941, but occurrence of alluvial gold in the region was not widely known outside the Geological Survey of Ethiopia until about 15 years ago. Then a gold rush started and several tens of thousands of people moved to the region in hope of finding riches. This has become an Ethiopian version of the great gold rushes in 19th century America, only with less guns and fewer cowboys.
Several major alluvial gold discoveries have been made and some of these have lead our team towards the sources of the gold such as the Segele and Joru gold deposits.
Akobo Minerals is currently working with a two-pronged strategy; we are looking to bring a smaller scale alluvial gold or hard rock operation into production, and we are exploring for hard rock gold deposits to establish a resource base for future mining, to ensure a long term growth of the company.
Our intermediate goal is to commence resource drilling at both the Segele and Joru gold deposits.
Photos by Morten Often
At Segele we are targeting the downward continuation of a small, high grade system that has seen extensive working by the local kofaris. The gold grades encountered by the kofaris have been very high; we know from government records that the hand dug pits at Segele have produced over 600 kg of gold from the so called Main pit. This pit is roughly 15 by 20 metre wide and reaches a depth of just 10 metre below surface. In addition to this there are several smaller shafts/pits in the vicinity. Our own sampling of the pits combined with geological mapping gives an image of a narrow (<10m) high grade system, striking roughly east-west and dipping to the north. The mineralized structure is undulating and commonly branches off and re-joins the main structure, just as a shear zone-hosted gold system is prone to do.
Our plan is to do a structural geology survey to get a better understanding of the structural control on the mineralization prior to starting a diamond drill program to systematically test the mineralization with the aim of producing a maiden resource estimation.
In Joru the gold deposit is different from Segele, here we have a large system with gold bearing quartz-veins hosted by a quartzofeldspatic body. The overall grade is lower but the system itself is several orders of magnitude larger, hence opening the door for a large tonnage, low grade deposit.
Just like at Segele the kofaris have mined large quantities of gold but in Joru the hard rock mining has only begun. The process used here is hand sorting the quartz-vein material and crushing it in steel mortars prior to panning by hand.
Our plan for Joru is larger in scope, we intend to do a larger structural survey to optimize the drill directions prior to doing a first pass, wide spaced core drilling program to test the extents of the deposit. Once we have a better understanding of the deposit we will move on to infill drilling and eventually resource estimation.