Gemstones that sparked a diamond rush to eastern South Africa last week are just quartz after all, according to preliminary findings.
Thousands of people had flocked to a hillside in South Africa’s KwaZulu-Natal province to dig for mysterious stones first unearthed by a cattle herder and believed to be diamonds.
The rush prompted the government to send geoscientists and mining experts to collect samples for testing, the results of which quashed the dreams of diggers hoping to strike it rich.
“The tests conducted conclusively revealed that the stones discovered in the area are not diamonds,” a local government statement said on Sunday in reference to the report.
“In fact, what has been discovered are quartz crystals,” it said, noting that the yet-to-determined value of the stones would be “very low” compared with diamonds.
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