SEMAFO Inc.
TSX : SMF

SEMAFO Inc.

July 08, 2010 08:31 ET

SEMAFO to Add Wona SW Zone to Mana Underground Project

MONTREAL, QUEBEC--(Marketwire - July 8, 2010) - SEMAFO (TSX:SMF) today announced that the Wona Southwest ("SW") Zone will become part of the underground feasibility study currently underway at the Mana Mine in Burkina Faso. Inclusion of the new exploration results combined with previous results from the Wona SW Zone have the potential to add significant reserves to the underground operation. The Company also provided an update on its core drilling program on the Wona Southwest ("SW") Zone, an area which lies immediately southwest and parallel to the Wona Main Deep Zone. The Wona Main Zone at depth was recently the principal subject of a successful pre-feasibility study as reported in SEMAFO's press release dated June 28, 2010, with the feasibility study currently underway. Results from the Wona SW Zone show consistent and continuous mineralization over a strike-length of at least 800 meters, representing more than 1.5 kilometers of virtually continuous gold mineralization along strike. In addition, new local higher grade parallel structures were crossed throughout southwest area.

As at June 30, and as part of our 2010 exploration program at Mana, 35 holes (WDC178 to WDC212) totaling 16,928 meters of drilling had been completed. Holes WDC190 to WDC193 were drilled for rock mechanics studies. Results available to date, up to hole WDC205 are presented in the following tables. (Results for holes WDC178 to WDC189 were previously reported in SEMAFO's press release dated April 20, 2010.)

Drill Results: Wona Main and Wona SW Zone

DDH No. Zone Section (N) From To Au / Length**
WDC190 Wona Main 16825 258.1 318.4 3.34 g/t / 60.3 m
          (4.80 g/t* uncut)
WDC191 Wona Main 16750 188.0 262.0 3.16 g/t / 74.0 m
          (3.95 g/t* uncut)
WDC192 Wona Main 16925 142.3 206.0 2.77 g/t / 63.7 m
WDC193 Wona Main 16700 189.0 233.0 4.53 g/t / 44.0 m
          (5.01 g/t* uncut)
WDC194 Wona SW 16200 270.0 275.0 1.66 g/t / 5.0 m
WDC195 Wona SW 16000 199.6 202.6 0.26 g/t / 3.0 m
WDC196 Wona SW 16100 334.5 341.0 4.07 g/t / 6.5 m
  Including     334.5 337.0 7.81 g/t / 2.5 m
WDC197 Wona SW 16100 331.0 341.2 3.58 g/t / 10.2 m
          (4.76 g/t* uncut)
  Including     331.0 334.0 8.94 g/t / 3.0 m
          (12.98 g/t* uncut)
WDC198 Wona SW 15700 252.0 266.0 3.90 g/t / 14.0 m
WDC199 Wona SW 15800 324.0 336.9 3.46 g/t / 12.9 m
WDC200 Wona SW 15700 294.4 305.5 3.66 g/t / 11.1 m
          (4.33 g/t* uncut)
WDC201 Wona SW 16300 444.9 454.6 2.39 g/t / 9.7 m
WDC202 Wona SW 15900 351.0 357.0 1.55 g/t / 6.0 m
WDC203 Wona SW 16300 406.0 410.6 1.40 g/t / 4.6 m
WDC204 Assays Pending          
WDC205 Wona SW 16200 410.7 420.0 3.43 g/t / 9.3 m

*All individual samples are cut at 15 g/t as per Wona Deposit procedures.

**All lengths are measured along the hole axis; additional information is required to determine true widths.

The most recent results are primarily located at the south-western end (up-plunge) of the zone, where it is interpreted to reach the bottom of the Wona open pit. Holes WDC198 and WDC200 are the south-western-most holes drilled thus far along this zone, which remains open to the southwest as well at depth (Figure 1). Current exploration will further investigate the southwest, as well as deeper extensions. To date, the Wona SW Zone appears to be continuously mineralized over a strike-length of at least 800 meters and it is believed that it joins the Main Zone locally, providing more than 1.5 kilometers of virtually continuous at-depth gold mineralization along strike.

The presence of parallel zones is becoming increasingly significant towards the southwest, showing areas of swelling with above average grades. Infill drilling will enable a more accurate interpretation as to their more discontinuous nature compared to the Wona Main and SW Zones. Furthermore, their proximity to the SW Zone and higher grade will undoubtedly increase the resource base in this area.

Drill Results: Parallel Zones Adjacent to Wona SW Zone

DDH No. Zone Section (N) From To Au / Length**
WDC195 Parallel 16000 262.5 270.3 4.02 g/t / 7.8 m
          (4.56 g/t* uncut)
WDC196 Parallel 16000 408.0 412.5 2.75 g/t / 4.5 m
WDC198 Parallel 15700 174.0 182.0 6.86 g/t / 8.0 m
          (14.98 g/t* uncut)
WDC199 Parallel 15800 349.5 358.6 2.77 g/t / 9.1 m
WDC199 Parallel 15800 389.6 398.6 2.82 g/t / 9.0 m
WDC199 Parallel 15800 408.9 425.0 3.74 g/t / 16.1 m
          (5.35 g/t* uncut)
  Including Parallel   408.9 412.6 9.56 g/t / 3.7 m
          (16.57 g/t* uncut)
WDC201 Parallel 16300 507.3 514.0 4.00 g/t / 6.7 m
          (15.91 g/t* uncut)
WDC202 Parallel 15900 420.0 424.0 3.28 g/t / 4.0 m

*All individual samples are cut at 15 g/t as per Wona Deposit procedures.

**All lengths are measured along the hole axis; additional information is required to determine true widths.

Commenting on the results, Michel Crevier, SEMAFO's Geology Manager and Qualified Person said, "As our core drilling program continues, it will enable us to more effectively track the hydrothermally-altered structures and discover new swells of the main mineralisation, even in ground formerly believed to be barren. Moreover, significant sub-structures are being added, which continue to add value to the underground project."

The exploration results expressed above, combined with previous results from the same SW Zone lead to a significant increase in potential additional reserves for the underground operation and provide sufficient motivation to postpone the feasibility study results until early in the first quarter 2011, in order to include the Wona SW Zone results to the geological model. The additional time will allow for infill drilling over the SW Zone, at-depth drilling on the center and south of the Wona Main pit, as well as infill drilling of the Kona open pit potential. The combined results will be modeled and fully integrated in an updated life-of-mine planning, which will optimise the interface between both the underground and open pit mining operations, based on the optimal blending for mill feed.

"We are very pleased with the continued positive drill results from Mana's Wona SW and parallel zones," said Benoit Desormeaux, Executive Vice-President and Chief Operating Officer. "We are confident that by deferring the feasibility study results in order to incorporate these new findings, we will substantially expand the magnitude of the underground project and once again increase the project's cash flow and internal rate of return. As well, given that the economic viability of an underground mining operation at Mana has been confirmed, the delay in issuing the feasibility study results will not impact our green light to commence project development."

The exploration programs were designed and managed locally by Dofinta Bondé and David Lalonde, Mana Minéral S.A.'s Exploration Chief Geologists and Richard Roy P Geo, Deputy Geology Manager, and guided and supervised under the direction of Michel Crevier, P.Geo MScA, Geology Manager and SEMAFO's Qualified Person. Mr. Crevier has reviewed this press release for accuracy and compliance with National Instrument 43-101.

All individual samples represent approximately one-meter in length of core which was sawed in half. Half of the core is kept on site for reference and its counterpart is sent for preparation and gold assaying at the ALS Chemex laboratories in Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso. Each sample is fire-assayed for gold content on a 50-gram sub-sample at the same ALS Chemex laboratories. In addition to ALS Chemex's own QA/QC (Quality Assurance/Quality Control) program, an internal quality control and quality assurance program is in place throughout the sampling program, using blind duplicates, blanks and recognized industry standards.

About SEMAFO

SEMAFO is a Canadian-based mining company with gold production and exploration activities in West Africa. The Company currently operates three gold mines: the Mana Mine in Burkina Faso, the Samira Hill Mine in Niger and the Kiniero Mine in Guinea. SEMAFO is committed to evolve in a conscientious manner to become a major player in its geographical area of interest. SEMAFO's strategic focus is to maximize shareholder value by effectively managing its existing assets as well as pursuing organic and strategic growth opportunities in West Africa.

Caution Concerning Forward-looking Statements

This press release contains forward-looking statements. Forward-looking statements involve known and unknown risks, uncertainties and assumptions and accordingly, actual results and future events could differ materially from those expressed or implied in such statements. You are hence cautioned not to place undue reliance on forward-looking statements. Forward-looking statements include words or expressions such as "growth", "believe", "look forward", "continuing", "evolve", "become", "pursuing", "will", "potential", "add", "appears", "continues", "enable", "lead", "increase", "expand", and other similar words or expressions. Factors that could cause future results or events to differ materially from current expectations expressed or implied by the forward-looking statements include the ability to include the Wona SW Zone results in the geological model, the ability to postpone the feasibility study results until early in the first quarter 2011, the ability of exploration results to lead to a significant increase in potential additional reserves for the underground operation, the ability to carry out infill drilling, the ability to substantially expand the magnitude of the underground project and once again increase the project's cash flow and internal rate of return, the ability to green light project development, the ability to find organic and strategic growth opportunities in West Africa, fluctuation in the price of currencies, gold or operating costs, mining industry risks, uncertainty as to calculation of mineral reserves and resources, delays, political and social stability in Africa (including our ability to maintain or renew licenses and permits) and other risks described in SEMAFO's documents filed with Canadian securities regulatory authorities. You can find further information with respect to these and other risks in SEMAFO's 2009 Annual MD&A, as updated by our 2010 First Quarter MD&A, and other filings made with Canadian securities regulatory authorities and available at www.sedar.com. These documents are also available on our website at www.semafo.com. SEMAFO disclaims any obligation to update or revise these forward-looking statements, except as required by applicable law.

To view the table "Figure 1", please click on the following link: http://media3.marketwire.com/docs/Figure%201%20-%200708.pdf

Contact Information

  • SEMAFO
    Benoit La Salle
    President & CEO
    514-744-4408
    Toll-Free: 1-888-744-4408
    blasalle@semafo.com
    or
    SEMAFO
    Sofia St Laurent
    Communications
    514-744-4408
    Toll-Free: 1-888-744-4408
    sstlaurent@semafo.com