A Christian pastor has found one of the world's largest uncut diamonds - weighing 706 carats - in Sierra Leone's eastern Kono region.
Pastor Emmanuel Momoh, handed the big "diadem" over to President Ernest Bai Koroma, who thanked him for not smuggling it out of the country. An 813-carat diamond was sold in a closed auction in London last month for 51 million pounds ($63 million), us said. He cited road construction and improvements to electricity after nearly 30 years of blackouts.
Bayraytay described the find as a "good news to the country" especially at the time of the country's development process. Sierra Leone was traumatised for years by a civil war financed by the sale of "blood diamonds".
The president expressed appreciation that there was no attempt to smuggle the gem out of the country, and encouraged others to emulate the pastor's example. He also promised to reward Momoh and to give the mine owners their due as well, .
"A gift from God, and it will be a bad thing if anyone tries to do something criminal with it", the president said.
He said potential buyers would have to come to Sierra Leone for transparency and accountability.