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Tanzanian artisanal miner finds huge rare gem stones worth $3.3m




A small-scale miner in Tanzania has earned 7.74 billion Tanzanian shillings ($3.35m) after selling to the country the two biggest tanzanite stones ever found.



The darkish violet-blue gemstones, which is the size of a forearm, were discovered by Saniniu Laizer in one of the tanzanite mines in the north of the Country that are surrounded by a wall to control cross-border smuggling of the gem stones.


"Today's event ... Is to recognize the two biggest tanzanite gemstones in history since the beginning of mining activities in Mirerani," Simon Msanjila, mines ministry permanent secretary, said at a rite(Ceremony) on Wednesday in Simanjiro district in Tanzania's northern Manyara region.


Tanzanite is a gemstone found only in a small northern area of Tanzania.

The first gemstone weighed in at 9.27kg (20.4 pounds) while the second weighed 5.103kg (11.25 pounds), a mines ministry spokesperson stated.

Laizer was pictured on Tanzanian television being presented with a large cheque after the country's central bank bought the gemstones. President John Magufuli phoned to congratulate Laizer live on television.

Tanzania last year trade of buying and selling centres around the country to allow artisanal miners to sell their gemstones and gold to the government.


Artisanal miners are not officially employed with the aid of any mining businesses and usually mine by means of hand.

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