African Pioneer ups Ongombo, Ongeama stakes

… miner invests N$5.6b for 15% extra shareholding

By Hilary Mare

LONDON-listed African Pioneer has entered into an agreement to acquire a further 15 percent interest in the Ongombo and Ongeama projects increasing its interest in each to 85 percent.

Confidente understands that the 15 percent interest in the Namibia Projects is being acquired by the company through its wholly owned subsidiary Zamcu Exploration Pty Ltd which is acquiring a 15 percent shareholding in each of Manmar Investments One Hundred and Twenty Nine (Pty) Ltd and Manmar Investments One Three Six (Pty) Ltd for an aggregated cash payments of N$5.6 billion.

“The prospects of copper are strong now and into the future and our assessment is that the copper industry will return to its structure of the 1990s, where small high-grade mines existed, medium sized open pit and underground mines existed and of course, the large open pits which were the key contributors.

“With this in mind we have commenced preparations for applying for a mining licence for the Ongombo Project and have accelerated our review of the projects technical information and are pleased to have acquired a further 15 percent interest in our copper gold Namibian projects which show good fundamentals,” executive chairman of African Pioneer, Colin Bird said.

Both the Ongombo and Ongeama projects (EPLs 5772 and 6011) are geologically located within the Matchless Member of the Kuiseb Formation, a conspicuous assemblage of lenses of foliated amphibolites, chlorite amphibolite schist, talc schist and metagabbro.

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This belt, up to 5 km wide in the Otjihase Mine (in care and maintenance) area, stretches 350 km north-eastwards within the southern zone of the Damara Orogen from the Gorob – Hope area in the south, towards Steinhausen in the north. The belt hosts copper-gold mineralisation which has been in past production at two localities (Otjihase – and Matchless Mines owned by Weatherly International plc).

The Ongombo occurrence was discovered in the early 1970s by an airborne magnetic survey, which was followed up on by 132 historical diamond drill holes that have defined three main northwest dipping mineralised shoots.
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The Ongeama copper occurrence is geologically similar to the Ongombo occurrence. Historical work defined a surface outcrop of northeast-southwest trending gossanous pelitic schists developed over 1.

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2 km.

Subsequently, 26 diamond drill holes completed in 1970’s demonstrated the Ongeama shoot extends down-plunge for a distance of 1 650m, over a width of 150 to 250m.
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Further drilling in the 1990s showed copper mineralisation to extend to a depth of 350m below surface.