Lucapa Diamond Company has revealed the largest diamond recovered from its Mothae kimberlite mine in Lesotho, since commercial operations commenced in January.
It is a gem-quality 126 carat diamond – the largest diamond ever recovered from Mothae.
It is the sixth 50-plus carat diamond recovered from Mothae since Lucapa commenced its pre-production bulk sampling program in 2018.
This latest discovery came shortly after Lucapa and its partners recovered a 130 carat gem-quality diamond from the company’s high-value Lulo alluvial mine in Angola earlier this year.
In a joint statement on Wednesday, the mining ministry and the mine said the 126 gem stone value will be communicated later after going through the boiling stage with an intention to improve its worth in the diamond market.
Mothae is located within five kilometres of the world’s highest $US per carat kimberlite diamond mine, Letšeng.
The mine has a production capacity of 1.1 million tonnes of ore a year and is the company’s second high-value mine after the Lulo project.
“We are delighted to have recovered our first 100-plus carat stone so early in our commercial mining campaign at Mothae, along with other rare Type IIa and fancy coloured gems, and look forward to unlocking the true value of this mine over the next decade and beyond,” Lucapa managing director Stephen Wetherall said.
“Lesotho is very proud of its international reputation as a producer of large and high-quality diamonds and this latest recovery from our newest mine, Mothae, continues to demonstrate our nation’s great potential,” Minister of Mining Keketso Sello added.
Mothae is a joint venture (JV) between Western Australia-based Lucapa and the Government of the Kingdom of Lesotho.