The stone was presented to President Mokgweetsi Masisi by Debswana Diamond Company’s acting managing director Lynette Armstrong. It is the third largest in the world, behind the 3,106 carat Cullinan stone recovered in South Africa in 1905 and the 1,109 carat Lesedi La Rona unearthed by Lucara Diamonds in Botswana in 2015. Minerals minister Lefoko Moagi said the discovery of the yet-to-be named stone, which measures 73mm long, 52mm wide and 27mm thick, could not have come at a better time after the COVID-19 pandemic hit diamond sales in 2020. “This is the largest diamond to be recovered by Debswana in its history of over 50 years in operation,” Armstrong said. “From our preliminary analysis it could be the world’s third largest gem quality stone. We are yet to make a decision on whether to sell it through the De Beers channel or through the state owned Okavango Diamond Company,” Armstrong said. The government receives as much as 80% of the income from Debswana’s sales through dividends, royalties and taxes.
SOURCE: DAILY MAVERICK