Johannesburg, South Africa — MININGREVIEW.COM — 01 March 2012 – Miranda Mineral Holdings (Miranda) “’ armed with a new major shareholder and a recapitalised balance sheet “’ has declared itself over its troubles, and says it will start generating revenue from coal prospects in KwaZulu- Natal in the current calendar year.
“It is expected that Miranda’s long-awaited move into active coal mining will take place during calendar year 2012,” said newly elected Miranda chairman Lelau Mohuba in the firm’s integrated report published here.
Finalisation of off-take agreements for its Sesikhona coal deposits would set the stage for the company to begin production in fields contiguous to, or near, this primary site,” he added.
Miranda has been through the mill over the last few years. Things culminated in a R98 million investment by none other than Thaksin Shinawatra, the former prime minister of Thailand, through his Dubai-based investment firm Global PS Mining Investments Company.
Thaksin was forced to flee Thailand in 2006 in a military coup.
Alongside this investment, there was an attempt by former Miranda CEO, Ron Nel “’ who had already been forced off the company’s board in return for Miranda receiving a financial bailout “’ to apply business rescue procedures for Miranda Minerals.
This is tantamount to declaring the company insolvent and freezing its assets “’ a move that Nel launched in an attempt to extract a better termination agreement from Miranda, it has been speculated.
In January this year, Incubex Minerals, which has former AngloGold Ashanti executive Alan Smith at its helm, negotiated a settlement with Nel and Global PS Investments which subsequently exited the business, selling its shares to Incubex.
“Incubex has agreed to settle outstanding financial issues on behalf of the group and to provide interim working capital and funding to ensure Miranda’s sustainability going forward,” said Mohuba.
The Sesikhona coal deposits – in fact only one deposit is called Sesikhona – number 10 properties in total and are all situated near Dundee and Glencoe in KwaZulu-Natal province, with two nearby sidings.
By way of example of their prospectivity, Miranda has a mining right over 884 hectares of Sesikhona property which, according to a TWP study, would yield first phase reserves from an opencast mine of some 1.5Mt and total resources of 22.8 Mt.
According to the Miranda Minerals website, and based on a 2010 estimation, Sesikhona was initially planned to produce at a rate of 40,000 tpm.