A small scale miner has become millionaire overnight after he discovered two largest tanzanite gemstones ever found.
According to the details, the Tanzanian miner, Saniniu Laizer, found two huge dark violet-blue stones worth £2.4 million.
The government handed Laizer, father-of-30, a cheque for 7.74 billion Tanzanian shillings (£2.4 million) for the two stones, each about the size of a forearm, during a trading event in the northern region of Manyara.
He discovered the chunks in one of the tanzanite mines in the north of the country which are surrounded by a wall to control cross-border smuggling of the valuable mineral, Mail Online reported.
The 52-year-old said that he would slaughter a cow to celebrate his good fortune. He vowed to use some of his earnings to build a school and a shopping mall in his community, adding that many locals can’t afford to pay for their children’s education.
But he insisted that his lifestyle would not change and that he would continue to look after his herd of 2,000 cows.
The first gemstone weighed 20lb while the second weighed 11lb, a mines ministry spokesperson said. Before Laizer dug out the chunks last week, the largest Tanzanite stone recorded was seven pounds.
Tanzania last year set up trading centres around the country to allow artisanal miners to sell their gems and gold to the government.