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25.10.2002 General News

Mining Equipment Lying Idle At Prestea

By GNA
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In the midst of the confusion surrounding mining operations in Prestea, a quantity of mining equipment worth about $581,015.67 imported by the Prestea Gold Resource (PGR) to support its underground operation are lying idle. These items imported from South Africa include pump spares, main shaft accessories for crushers, Roller Bearings, Locco Batteries, among others. Mr. Francis Adu-Blay Kwofie, a spokesman for ex-PGR workers, said the equipment had been packed while the underground operations had been stopped. The closure of the underground operations by New Century Mines, a joint venture between the PGR and Bogoso Gold Limited (BGL) has polarized the Prestea township. A forum held last Tuesday to discuss the environmental and social impacts of surface mining near Prestea turned nasty when some angry youths threw stones and other missiles at participants, destroying property in the process. Mr. Kwofie noted that though the PGR had some operational problems, the arrival of the underground support equipment would have turned the fortunes of the company around if it had not been prematurely closed down. According to him, despite all the frustrations, PGR has been able to establish a robust ore reserve position to guarantee non-interruptible operations of the company for several years to come. He gave the break-down of reserves as: proven ore reserves, 977,524 tonnes with a grade of 6.4 while ore in situ (ore available) is 312,808 tonnes. Mr. Kwofie said probable ore reserves are 765,502 tonnes with the grade of 5.96 while ore in situ is 228,119 tonnes. Inferred reserves, he noted, amount to 1,102,733 tonnes with 5.65 grade while ore in situ is 311,522 tonnes. The spokesman said given the intention of PGR to become a low cost producer, “we can continue to mine and process low grade ore to prolong the life of the mine.”

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