Delrand Resources Limited ("Delrand" or the "Company") provides an update on its diamond exploration activities in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (the "DRC").
The northern DRC has a long history of good quality alluvial diamonds. To date, no primary sources, or kimberlites, for these diamonds have been found. Delrand has prospected large areas in the provinces of Equateur and Orientale in the search of these kimberlites.
Delrand's sampling exploration programs over the Bomili and nearby Coexco ground in the northern DRC was conducted between 2009 and 2012.
Stream sampling programs were also conducted over several phases between 2009 and 2012 over the two Bomili exploration permits, which are wholly-owned by the Company and which occur 10 km north of the Coexco ground. Three targets have been identified on the Bomili permits. These targets were covered by 89 close spaced samples in 2012 of which 51 were positive with ilmenite and chrome spinel. 14 of these samples contained more than 10 mantle grains per sample strongly suggesting the presence of proximal kimberlite. The results also indicate that these are aligned along NW-SE orientated structures on one of the Bomili permits. Delrand is planning a mission in this month of August to identify the source of those grains in at least two of the positive streams previously sampled. The Company believes that it will be able to locate the source of those mantle grains by a combination of stream samples and 'hammer' survey as there is little cover in the area and good outcrop in the streams. The next steps, once the source(s) has been identified, are dependent upon the interest rating of these rocks but could include more sampling, geophysics and drilling.
A significant number of samples collected over the original 44 Coexco exploration permits produced 63 diamonds, 17 ilmenites, 48 chromites (including nine from the diamond inclusion field) and eight garnets during three phases of stream sampling in the period between 2009 and 2012. Interpretation of these results highlighted six targets covering parts of nine of the original 44 Coexco exploration permits for further detailed follow-up work. Further analysis resulted in one of the six targets being dropped. Application to reduce the initial 44 permits into these five targets has been submitted to the Department of Mines (CAMI) in Kinshasa, DRC.
Some other high-interest targets have also been identified in the Orientale Province by Delrand and may be pursued once the Department of Mines (CAMI) in Kinshasa, DRC opens for new applications.
In the Kasai region of the southern DRC, Delrand continues to interpret a large diamond exploration dataset that covers areas well in excess of 100,000km² which were explored between 2004 and 2008 by a number of companies using modern exploration techniques. This dataset in conjunction with Delrand's own large database, which it has built up since 2004 from a program of stream and soil sampling and airborne and ground geophysical surveys over much of its historical held ground and that of its previous joint venture partners, provides Delrand with the largest exploration database for diamonds over one of the most prospective and least explored areas in the world - the Kasai Craton, producer of most of the DRC's historical diamond production of over 1.2 billion carats. The work has so far identified numerous targets with samples that contain high interest mantle minerals and priority geophysical targets. The mineral chemistry of these minerals suggests that they are likely to be derived from kimberlites that are diamond-bearing.
Negotiations with Acacia sprl are on-going in order to convert the option agreement that the Company has with this local company into a joint venture agreement. Although Rio Tinto has announced its intention to withdraw from the joint venture iron ore project, Delrand will maintain its interest in the asset with a view to realizing any potential value at a future date.
Commenting on this update of exploration activities Dr. Mike de Wit, the Company's President, said: "Over the past several years, Delrand has been limited to a low cost and focused exploration programme. During this period Delrand has itself amassed and obtained access to a considerable amount of exploration data. The Company continues to process and further explore arguably the most comprehensive DRC diamond exploration data base that has ever been assembled."
Dr. Mike de Wit, President of the Company and a "qualified person" (as such term is defined in National Instrument 43-101), has reviewed and approved the technical information in this press release.