The people of Botswana have been honored with the task of officially naming the mammoth 1,111-carat diamond that was discovered in their country at the Karowe Mine back in November. The citizen who dreams up the best name will win a cash prize of 25,000 pula (about $2,150).
Slightly smaller than a tennis ball and weighing nearly a half-pound, the Type IIa chemically pure gem is the world's second-largest diamond. Only the 3,106-carat Cullinan, found in South Africa in 1905, was larger.
Mining company Lucara Diamond Corp. will hand out the cash prize to the Botswana citizen who comes up with the best name for the epic stone. The 11-day competition, which was open only to Botswana citizens, ends on January 28. Entrants are required to propose a name and the reasons why the name should be considered.
Lucara CEO William Lamb credited Kitso Mokaila, Botswana's minister of minerals, energy and water resources, for coming up with the idea to honor his people with the naming rights.
"The minister thought it would be a great idea to give [the Botswana people] an opportunity to name the stone as it belonged to them,” Lamb told Botswana's MmegiOnline.
Lamb revealed that this is not the first time the Botswana people have been called on to assist with a naming task. When Lucara wanted a better name for its AK6 mine, it established a competition among the country's school children. Karowe was picked as the winning entry and the children's school earned computers for the kids' creative input.
How much the 1,111-carat diamond could be worth is the subject of wild speculation. Recently, the Karowe Mine yielded a 342-carat diamond that sold for $20.55 million, or $60,089 per carat. If the soon-to-be named diamond sells for the same amount per carat, its price would be close to $66 million. The intangible factor is the gem's status of being the second-largest diamond in history — a factor which should boost its value even more.
Credits: Images courtesy of Lucara Diamonds.