Jul. 19, 2010 (Filing Services Canada) -- African Queen Mines Ltd. (AQ - TSX Venture, QM0 - FWB), (the "Company") is pleased to announce that it has now commenced its Phase 1 Exploration Program on the Rongo Gold Field Project in the Kanango gold mining area of the Migori District of Nyanza Province in Southwest Kenya near Lake Victoria. The Project is subject to an Earn-In and Joint Venture Agreement (the "Agreement") between the Company and Abba Mining Company Limited ("Abba"), pursuant to which the Company may earn up to an 85% interest in the Project, which is covered by a license encompassing approximately 112 sq. km., by funding prescribed optional stages from exploration through feasibility. The Agreement and all planned work programs for Phase 1 have been approved by the Commissioner of Mines and Geology of the Government of the Republic of Kenya.
The work covering Phase I will include (i) comprehensive rock and soil sampling, trenching and pitting over the license area; (ii) geological mapping and evaluation; and (iii) airbourne geophysical studies. The objective of the Phase 1 Exploration Program is to assess the overall geologic structure of the License area and the likelihood of a commercially viable gold deposit within the License area, as well as to identify discreet drill targets for a Phase 2 core drilling program. The costs for Phase 1, estimated at up to U.S. $300,000, are being paid by the Company.
The Project is situated some 380 km. by road from the capital city of Nairobi and 60 km. N of the border with Tanzania, forming part of the rich Lake Victoria Greenstone Belt extending from Tanzania and hosting known world-class gold deposits including African Barrick Gold's Bulyanhulu and North Mara Mines, within approximately 100 km. of the Project, and AngloGold Ashanti's Geita Mine. The area of the license covers Archaean age metavolcanics and granites of the Nyanzian System within which historical records of gold production are known. The area is situated over the northern contact of the Kinjere Granite with Nyanzian greenstones. Migori, one of the earliest gold mines in Kenya, is situated along the southern contact and has a similar geological setting. Active artisanal mining is presently occurring on the Kamwango area of the license, which has been prioritised for detailed field study.
Field visits and liaisons with all the relevant local governmental bodies and responsible persons have now been completed and the detailed Phase 1 sampling, trenching and pitting program is now underway on the ground. Supervision and geological mapping and sampling of this area is being conducted by Remote Exploration Services of Cape Town, S.A. ("RES") who have been responsible for carrying out most of the preceding years' field work for the Company's projects in Mozambique and Ghana. Overall project management is being provided to the Company by Senior Consulting Geologist Pete Siegfried (M.Sc., MAusIMM), a qualified person, who has approved the contents of this press release.
It is planned to use the trenching and pitting initially for orientation and sampling of the area presently producing artisanal gold. As much of the area is covered by a few meters of recent alluvial material, detailed mapping of the geology has been hampered in the past. It is the Company's intent to identify potential gold bearing, quartz veined fault structures and drill these zones later this year in order to establish grade, thickness and depth extent of the underlying gold mineralization.
Approval has now been granted by the civil aviation authorities of Kenya ("KCAA") to commence a detailed airborne geophysical survey and it is expected that flying will commence prior to month-end. The magnetic survey is anticipated to highlight areas of structural interest such as faults and shear zones. Terrascan Airborne GmbH & Co Kg, based in Germany, has been contracted to carry out the survey on behalf of the Company and has had extensive experience working in remote parts of Africa. Terrascan's geophysicists will be providing the necessary quality assurance with quality control being provided by Mr. Rainer Wackerle based in Windhoek, Namibia. Mr. Wackerle for many years oversaw quality control for the airborne geophysical surveys completed by the Namibian government through various SYSMIN and related grants.
According to Irwin Olian, CEO of the Company, "We are very excited to be commencing our work programs in Kenya. While the Rongo Gold Field is a highly prospective area on the Lake Victoria Greenstone Belt with potential to host a major deposit, it has to date been underexplored as a result of overburden which largely concealed the mineralized zones below surface. This has created a great opportunity for us to add value and we are now moving forward with our exploration programs with all due haste. The Kenyan authorities as well as our JV partner Abba have been extremely helpful in providing necessary support and cooperation, with the result that we are already at work on the ground only a few months following consummation of our underlying agreement."
The Company is an exploratory resource company with diversified mineral properties in Southern and West Africa. It is exploring its properties in Mozambique, Kenya and Ghana for gold and other metals and it is exploring its properties in Botswana and Namibia for diamonds. The Company's licenses in Botswana and Namibia comprise approximately 9208 sq km of diamond prospects. In Mozambique it has approximately 230 sq km of gold and other metals licenses under an agreement with another company. In Kenya it has approximately 112 sq. km. of gold and other minerals licenses under an agreement with another company. Its operations in Botswana are carried out through its operating subsidiary, PAM Botswana (Pty) Ltd.; its operations in Namibia are carried out through its operating subsidiary PAM Minerals Namibia (Pty) Ltd.; its operations in Mozambique are carried out through its subsidiary PAM Mocambique Limitada and its operations in Ghana are carried out through its subsidiary AQ Ghana Gold Limited. Its operations in Kenya are being carried out through its operating subsidiary AQ Kenya Gold Limited. The Company has its executive offices in Vancouver, Canada.
ON BEHALF OF THE BOARD OF DIRECTORS OF
AFRICAN QUEEN MINES, LTD.
Chairman & CEO
For more information, contact:
Irwin Olian, President and CEO
Phone: (604) 899-0100
Fax: (604) 899-0200
Carrie Howes, Corporate Communications
Phone: Dusseldorf - +49 (0) 1722 1234 47
Phone: London - +44 (0) 7780 602 788
The TSX Venture Exchange has not reviewed and does not accept responsibility for the adequacy or accuracy of the content of the information contained herein. The statements made in this press release may contain certain forward-looking statements that involve a number of risks and uncertainties. Actual events or results may differ from the Company's expectations.
AFRICAN QUEEN MINES LTD.
Suite 1450, Box 11553
650 W. Georgia Street
Source: African Queen Mines Ltd.
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