Barrick Gold loses key leadership at Acacia Mining amid Tanzania dispute

TORONTO _ Barrick Gold Corp. (TSX:ABX) has lost key leaders at Acacia Mining, the London-based mining company that it majority owns, as the company continues to try and resolve a major impasse with the Tanzanian government.

Acacia says its chief executive officer Brad Gordon and chief financial officer Andrew Wray are both stepping down by the end of the year, the former for family reasons and the latter for an unspecified outside opportunity.

The departures of the top managers come as Acacia tries to sort out a US$190-billion tax bill from Tanzania and a ban on exporting concentrated precious metals from the country.

Barrick announced on Oct. 19 that it had negotiated a deal with the Tanzanian government that will see a 50-50 sharing of economic benefits from Acacia’s three mines in the country, as well as a goodwill payment from Acacia of US$300 million.

Acacia, however, has said it needs further clarification on the deal before granting any approval, and that it doesn’t expect to see a detailed proposal from Barrick until the first half of 2018.

The company says Peter Geleta, Acacia’s head of organizational effectiveness, will step into the role of interim CEO, while Jaco Maritz, the company’s general manager of finance, will take on the role of CFO.