Resolute Mining Limited (ASX:RSG) (LON:RSG) has received “highly encouraging” oxide gold drilling results from ongoing exploration at satellite deposits of the Syama Gold Mine in Mali, West Africa.

Syama North results demonstrate the potential for a return to oxide mining at areas near previously mined open pits while at Tabakoroni a new zone of shallow oxide mineralisation has been identified.

The positive results of up to 7 metres at 22.83 g/t from 17 metres and 9 metres at 10 g/t provide encouragement for the potential to expand oxide resources.

New oxide opportunities

They are from locations with existing haul road infrastructure which will enable extensions to existing oxide mining at Syama.

Resolute’s managing director and CEO John Welborn welcomed the positive exploration update and the identification of new oxide mining opportunities at Syama.

He said: “Since 2014, Resolute has established and maintained a very successful oxide mining and processing operation at Syama.

“Expanding oxide resources and extending the life of this operation is a key objective of our business.

“These results are highly encouraging and reinforce our commitment to exploration and confirm the prospectivity of Resolute’s extensive Syama landholding.”

Accelerated oxide exploration

The company began a program of accelerated oxide exploration in the March quarter of 2020 to coincide with the dry season in Mali.

Exploration to expand oxide resources and extend mine life is a key priority for Resolute.

These efforts have focused on areas adjacent to the oxide deposits north of Syama and in the vicinity of  Tabakoroni deposit, 35 kilometres south of Syama.

Syama North results

The Syama North targets are adjacent to the existing Beta and BA01 open pits mined by Resolute between 2017 and 2018 producing 2.3 million tonnes at 2.13 g/t for 155,000 ounces.

Better results include:

  • 7 metres at 22.83 g/t from 17 metres;
  • 5 metres at 13 g/t from 7 metres;
  • 21 metres at 1.49 g/t from 14 metres;
  • 23 metres at 6.61 g/t from 8 metres; and
  • 19 metres at 5.29 g/t from 90 metres.

The results demonstrate the potential for a return to oxide mining in this area and this will be further investigated with follow-up drilling starting this month.

Potential also exists for future sulphide discoveries at depth and future exploration will investigate this.

Tabakoroni extensions

At Tabakoroni a new zone of shallow oxide gold mineralisation has been identified between the existing Tabakoroni deposit and the previously identified porphyry deposit.

Drilling targeted potential extensions to mineralised zones that could lead to pit pushbacks or even new pits if enough material is discovered.


  • 7 metres at 9.30 g/t from 32 metres;
  • 8 metres at 3.55 g/t from 61 metres;
  • 10 metres at 6.54 g/t from 141 metres, 5 metres at 4.79 g/t from 132 metres and 9 metres at 10.15 g/t from 118 metres; and
  • 13 metres at 1.97 g/t from 24 metres and 2 metres at 12.04 g/t from 132 metres.

The zones outlined are discontinuous and require more drilling to define coherent zones.

Experience from grade control and mining at Tabakoroni North and Porphyry pits indicate that close-spaced drilling is required to fully assess the vein and supergene styles of mineralisation.

Results for the remaining seven holes of the reverse circulation (RC) program are pending.

Diamond drilling along the main Tabakoroni deposit also continues to define and extend sulphide mineralisation as part of the Tabakoroni Underground Feasibility Study.

Seeking new resources

Resolute holds 80 kilometres of contiguous tenements along the highly prospective Syama shear and is continuing to explore for new oxide positions as well as high-grade sulphide zones to complement the 3 million ounces of ore reserves at Syama Underground Mine.

Location of Resolute tenements along the Syama Shear Zone.

RC drill programs are also planned south of Syama where recent soil geochemical programs have defined new target areas along the main Syama Shear and east of the Paysans-Cashew Trend.

Oxide production

Gold production from the Syama oxide processing plant is sourced from ore mined from the Tabakoroni Open Pit Mine, 35 kilometres south of the plant.

The open pit operations at Tabakoroni are expected to continue until May 2020.

Open pit oxide mining here has contributed to the build-up of large stockpiles of oxide material which will be processed during 2021 and 2022.

As of March 31, 2020, oxide stockpiles at Syama were 3.5 million tonnes at 1.36 g/t containing 156,000 ounces.

Following completion of open pit mining at Tabakoroni, open pit mining of oxide ore will be conducted at the Cashew and Paysans satellite deposits which are 5-10 kilometres south of the Syama plant.

Mineral resources at Cashew are approximately 100,000 ounces at 2 g/t and at Paysans are approximately 270,000 ounces at 1.7 g/t.