Bullman Minerals (TSXV: FUL) believes it’s off to a good start in West Africa where it has two projects on the Birimian Gold Belt in northeastern Guinea.
Today the junior explorer announced that it has completed its first resource estimate for Sidikila, one of six initial prospects on its 100%-owned Balandougouba gold project on the eastern border of Guinea and Mali.
The deposit has an inferred resource of 39.8 million tonnes grading 0.94 gram gold per tonne for 1.21 million oz. contained gold at a 0.3 gram gold per tonne cut-off grade. The deposit remains open at depth and along strike to the southeast and to the north.
The resource was based on a 5,763-metre drill program. Thirty-eight of the forty-two reverse circulation drill holes intersected mineralization between surface and a depth of 100 metres. (The remaining four holes were drilled at depths of between 200 metres and 250 metres below surface.)
Bullman says there is potential to increase the resource at the Sidikila deposit—which is currently about 600 metres long and up to 100 metres wide—by drilling down dip and along strike to the north and southeast. It also says that the structure hosting the mineralization can be traced for 6 km to the southeast and over 15 km to the north as a strong electromagnetic (EM) high.
Balandougouba, which spans 265 square kilometres, is about 900 km northeast of Conakry, the capital of Guinea and 250 km south of Bamako, the capital of Mali. It is located within the Birimian-age Siguiri Basin, which underlies a portion of northeastern Guinea and southern Mali.
The Siguiri Basin hosts Upper Guinea’s three producing gold mines: AngloGold Ashanti’s (NYSE: AU) Siguiri mine; Russia-based Nordgold’s (LSE: NORD) Lefa mine; and Semafo’s (TSX: SMF) Kéniéro mine, which was placed on care and maintenance earlier ths year.
News of the resource estimate pushed up Bullman’s shares by 20%, or 5¢, to 30¢ per share. Over the last year the junior explorer has traded in a range of 20¢ and 75¢.
Bullman’s other property in northeastern Guinea, called Siguiri, is about 830 km northeast of Conakry and about 230 km southwest of Bamako. The 248-sq-km property is made up of three exploration permits that are organized on two separate concession blocks, immediately to the north and to the south of the town of Siguiri.
Bullman expects to complete a maiden resource estimate for the Siguiri project before the end of the year. On March 17 the company announced the results of its first drill program (2,220 metres of diamond drilling and 7,655 metres of reverse circulation drilling) from November 2013 to March 2014.
Highlights from four deposits along a 16-km shear zone included 45.5 metres grading 2.44 grams gold per tonne (the Shawn deposit); 21 metres grading 1.27 grams gold (the Fadiougoula deposit); 9 metres averaging 2.68 grams gold (the FK deposit); and 17 metres of 0.97 gram gold (the Tinko deposit).
Bullman acquired the two properties from Birimian Gold, a private Norwegian exploration and mine development company in Oslo, Norway. Prior to that, Siguiri and Balandougouba formed part of a larger mineral holdings held by Caracal Gold between 2003 and early 2012.
According to a May 2013 technical report, Caracal completed internal resource estimates for each property. The company’s historic estimates outlined between 0.7 and 0.8 million oz. gold for Balandougouba and between 0.9 million and 1.5 million oz. gold for Siguiri.
In Guinea, exploration permits can be converted to mining permits that are initially valid for 15 years, the technical report stated. Surface rights are granted with the exploitation permits. For gold properties, the government has the right to a 15% free-carried interest and reserves the right to acquire an additional 20% participating interest. A royalty tax of 5% is applicable per oz. of gold produced, based on the London daily fixed gold price.
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