Wednesday, February 6, 2019

Axiom plans legal action over Solomon Islands nickel licences

The share price of junior Axiom Mining stumbled on Wednesday as the company revealed it was considering legal action over the Kolosori tenement, in the Solomon Islands.

In December, Axiom was notified by the Solomon Islands Ministry of Mines, Energy and Rural Electrification (MMERE) that its prospecting licence application over the Kolosori project had been unsuccessful.

Despite Axiom requesting that the Ministry review its decision, the MMERE has refused to do so.

Axiom on Wednesday said that the company had been made aware that one, or possibly two, prospecting licences had been issued to other companies over Kolosori, with these companies having limited or no experience within the mining sector.

ASX-listed Axiom said that it was of the belief that the requirements of the legislation had not been complied with, and as a result, these prospecting licences were invalid.

The company is now considering applying for a judicial review in the High Court, seeking that its prospecting licence application be "properly" considered.

Axiom, in the meantime, has also obtained a default judgment in its favour regarding defamation proceedings against one of the companies that has been issued a prospecting licence over Kolosori.

The judgment concerned the publication and distribution of materials containing a number of false or misleading and defamatory statements about Axiom, that were distributed to members of the Minerals Board and the then Minister of Mines, before a meeting in November last year, where Axiom’s prospecting licence was considered, and rejected.

The company has been ordered to pay Axiom damages for an amount yet to be determined, and to serve an apology and full retraction of all the false and misleading statements.

The Kolosori deposit forms part of Axiom’s larger Isabel nickel project, which also includes the San Jorge deposit, where mining is already under way.

SOURCE: MINING WEEKLY/PMW

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