Pastor Emmanuel Momoh who discovered the 709.48 carats diamond says he intends to use proceeds from its sale for the development of his business, family and Kono District.
Pst. Momoh said his workers found the diamond in his mining pit in Koryandu village. Realizing the diamond was a huge discovery he informed Paramount Chief Paul Ngaba Saquee of Tankoro Chiefdom who travelled with him to Freetown to show the diamond to President Koroma.
He disclosed that he holds an artisan mining license from the Mines and Minerals office in Kono and has been an active miner over the past six years.
Speaking to Awoko last Friday 17th March, which was his birthday, a happy Pastor Momoh said he believes the diamond is now safe and secure in the vault of the Bank of Sierra Leone.
He could not be drawn on the actual price of the diamond, but said he knows the sale of the diamond will bring in a lot of money. He appealed to those dealing with the diamond to be honest with him.
Pst. Momoh denied previously accepting or being given any support from any dealer or Lebanese to do his mining, and expressed worries over one Lebanese (Name withheld) who claimed to be have been supporting him, and is therefore entitled to a share in proceeds from the sale of the diamond.
A determined Paramount Chief of Tankoro Chiefdom Paul Ngaba Saquee said the diamond was discovered in his chiefdom and he will ensure the owner (Pst Momoh) gets his due after paying all taxes due to government. He added “I will follow the due process until the diamond is sold in a fair and transparent deal.”
The National Minerals Agency (NMA) has issued a press release announcing a call for bids from buyers for the 709.48 carats diamond, which they say will be sold by International tender.
The diamond will be on display at the Bank of Sierra Leone from Wednesday March 22nd to Thursday March 30th, 2017 and interested parties can submit sealed bids with a 2% bid security and the bids will be opened on the 5th April, 2017.