Local company Maroon Capital (Pty) Ltd has been shortlisted as the best preferred bidder to acquire Lerala diamond mine which has been under liquidation process since June 2017.
The Minister of Mineral Resources, Green Technology and Energy Security, Lefoko Moagi told Parliament last week when answering questions from Kanye North MP Thapelo Letsholo that: “some investors have interest to acquire Lerala diamond mine. A local company Maroon Capital (Pty) Ltd is shortlisted by the liquidator. The company is currently working on modalities to acquire the mining License”.
Letsholo had asked the minister to reveal the status of Lerala diamond mine and the number of workers who lost jobs in consequence, the status of the Mine assets and if any investors had shown interest in operating the mine.
Moagi indicated that the mine was not operational as it has been under liquidation since June 2017, saying the liquidator Kopanang Thekiso has been searching for investors to acquire mine.
“The mine was closed because it had big financial constraints as well as operational inefficiency. One Hundred (150) permanent employers and forty (40) casual workers lost their jobs,” he said.
According to him, the mine assets have been maintained as much as possible regularly where financial resources permitted; adding that one case of cable theft was reported from the mine.
The mine closed with creditors claiming about P30 million from the then cash short mine with Australian owners Kimberly Diamond Mine Ltd (KDL) citing weak market conditions at the time.
The MP for Sefhare-Ramokgonami, Dr Kesitegile Gobotswang said the mine has been closed twice before 2017, owing to similar reasons but hoped that new investors will sustain the mine further.
He said it is motivating that the mine will be re-opened, adding that the Tswapong region under which the mine is located suffered heavy blow when the mine closed as it employed people in the area.