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Press release from Marketwire

SEMAFO Drills 4.07 g/t Au Over 43 Meters to Further Expand Wona SW Deep Zone at Mana

Parallel zone returns 4.43 g/t Au over 25 meters

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

SEMAFO Drills 4.07 g/t Au Over 43 Meters to Further Expand Wona SW Deep Zone at Mana09:09 EDT Tuesday, October 18, 2011MONTREAL, QUEBEC--(Marketwire - Oct. 18, 2011) - SEMAFO (TSX:SMF) today reported drill results from its ongoing exploration and in-fill program on the Wona SW zone, located immediately southwest and parallel to the Wona Deep zone. Core drilling results have added underground depth potential revealing wide and high-grade mineralization. Results with values including WDC319, which returned 4.07 g/t Au(4.33 g/t Au uncut)over43 meters, extend the mineralization at-depth and suggest a mineralized plunge similar to the central portion of the Wona Main zone. Results from Wona's Parallel zones show interesting values and thickness that suggest important swelling as confirmed by hole WDC322, which returned 4.43 g/t Au (8.63 g/t Au uncut) over25 meters (Figure 1: http://media3.marketwire.com/docs/sea1710.pdf).Following SEMAFO's press release dated of May 12, 2011, a total of 34,659 meters of core drilling in 95 holes (up to WDC421) have been completed on the Wona and Wona SW zones with the available results to date presented below. All assays remain pending for holes WDC328 to WDC421.Wona SW Zone ResultsDDH No.***ZoneSection (N)FromToAu* / Length**WDC288Wona SW15750164.0172.03.30 g/t/8.0 mWDC289Wona SW15750199.0217.03.16 g/t/18.0 m(4.28 g/t uncut)Including199.7204.06.90 g/t/4.3 m(11.60 g/t uncut)WDC290Wona17000555.0569.03.51 g/t/14.0 mWDC291Wona SW15750243.0255.02.78 g/t/12.0 mWDC293Wona SW15750329.0336.03.08 g/t/7.0 mWDC294Wona17100502.0506.02.95 g/t/4.0 mWDC295Wona SW15550209.0234.02.86 g/t/25.0 mIncluding222.0230.04.00 g/t/8.0 mWDC296Wona17150533.7536.05.05 g/t/2.3 mWDC297Wona SW15550309.0327.03.82 g/t/18.0 mIncluding319.0327.05.43 g/t/8.0 mWDC298Wona SW15450253.0272.02.36 g/t/19.0 mIncluding264.0272.03.27 g/t/8.0 mWDC299Wona17150581.0585.01.10 g/t/4.0 mWDC300Wona SW15550388.0396.03.41 g/t/8.0 m(4.36 g/t uncut)WDC302Wona16850389.3391.33.43 g/t/2.0 mWDC304Wona SW15450185.0208.02.56 g/t/23.0 mIncluding196.0204.03.95 g/t/8.0 mWDC306Wona SW15750373.0391.02.11 g/t/18.0 mIncluding388.0391.05.02 g/t/3.0 mWDC308Wona SW15850203.0213.02.68 g/t/10.0 mIncluding209.0213.04.25 g/t/4.0 mWDC309Wona SW15850160.0168.01.76 g/t/8.0 mWDC310Wona SW16450302.5321.04.64 g/t/18.5 m(4.94 g/t uncut)Including303.5310.06.03 g/t/6.5 m(6.89 g/t uncut)WDC311Wona16900541.0547.04.00 g/t/6.0 mWDC312Wona SW15850235.0249.02.30 g/t/14.0 mWDC313Wona SW16450347.0361.02.47 g/t/14.0 mIncluding347.0350.05.88 g/t/3.0 mWDC314Wona SW15850293.0299.02.72 g/t/6.0 mWDC315Wona16800355.0362.02.92 g/t/7.0 mWDC316Wona SW16450435.5440.01.51 g/t/4.5 mWDC317Wona SW15850349.6361.03.73 g/t/11.4 mIncluding351.8358.44.75 g/t/6.6 mWDC318Wona16750422.0428.12.25 g/t/6.1 mWDC319Wona SW15850486.0529.04.07 g/t/43.0 m(4.33 g/t uncut)Including507.0521.05.16 g/t/14.0 m(5.79 g/t uncut)WDC320Wona SW16450551.2557.22.73 g/t/6.0 mWDC321Wona17000665.4668.83.10 g/t/3.4 mWDC322Wona SW15600380.0387.01.05 g/t/7.0 mWDC323PendingWDC324Wona17200379.0385.04.92 g/t/6.0 mWDC325PendingWDC326PendingWDC327Wona SW16550356.9365.32.57 g/t/8.4 m* All individual samples are cut at 15 g/t as per Wona Deposit procedures. ** All lengths are measured along the hole axis; additional information is required to determine true widths.*** WDC301, WDC303 and WDC305 have not been drilled on the Wona - Kona zone, and WDC292 and WDC307 were cancelled due to strong deviation.Core drilling completed includes infill drilling of the Wona and Wona SW as well as extensions. The results confirmed the high-grade potential of the Wona SW zone with values of up to 4.64 g/t Au (4.94 g/t Au uncut) across 18.5 meters, as well as identified a wide and higher-grade zone at greater depths with hole WDC319 returning 4.07 g/t Au across 43 meters. Hole WDC319 belongs to the same trend as previously announced holes WDC284 and WDC287 (reference SEMAFO's press release dated May 12, 2011), which returned 2.27 g/t Au over 51 meters and 2.24 g/t Au over 29 meters respectively. This suggests the presence of a second wide ore shoot plunging slightly north, similar to the Wona main ore shoot, and could hold a large area of wide gold mineralization. Further drilling is scheduled to test this area and its extensions. Parallel Zones The parallel zones, located 10 to 30 meters east of the Wona structure, continue to be increasingly significant towards the southwest showing areas of swelling with above-average grades as confirmed by hole WDC322 which returned 4.43 g/t Au (8.63 g/t Au uncut) across 25 meters and hole WDC297 with 3.12 g/t Au (7.03 g/t Au uncut) over 13 meters. Parallel Zones HighlightsDDH No.ZoneSection (N)FromToAu* / Length**WDC291Parallel15750342.0346.02.39 g/t/4.0 mWDC291Parallel15750352.0358.03.93 g/t/6.0 mWDC291Parallel15750364.0369.04.49 g/t/5.0 mWDC293Parallel15750315.0322.02.55 g/t/7.0 mWDC293Parallel15750426.0431.02.33 g/t/5.0 mWDC294Parallel17100601.0605.03.28 g/t/4.0 mWDC295Parallel15550302.0305.07.14 g/t/3.0 mWDC297Parallel15550286.0290.03.01 g/t/4.0 mWDC297Parallel15550378.0391.03.12 g/t/13.0 m(7.03 g/t uncut)WDC298Parallel15450291.0305.51.73 g/t/14.5 mWDC298Parallel15450329.0336.04.01 g/t/7.0 mWDC302Parallel16850352.3356.85.04 g/t/4.5 mWDC306Parallel15750359.0366.01.95 g/t/7.0 mWDC306Parallel15750454.0464.03.03 g/t/10.0 mWDC308Parallel15850247.0251.02.78 g/t/4.0 mWDC311Parallel16900642.0646.31.89 g/t/4.3 mWDC311Parallel16900680.0682.05.96 g/t/2.0 mWDC314Parallel15850366.0370.01.61 g/t/4.0 mWDC314Parallel15850383.2388.07.35 g/t/4.8 mWDC318Parallel16750333.0343.01.48 g/t/10.0 mWDC322Parallel15600409.0434.04.43 g/t/25.0 m(8.63 g/t uncut)Including427.0434.07.31 g/t/7.0 m(22.17 g/t uncut)WDC323Parallel16550319.0333.01.40 g/t/14.0 mWDC324Parallel17200649.0658.71.68 g/t/9.7 m* All individual samples are cut at 15 g/t as per Wona Deposit procedures. **All lengths are measured along the hole axis; additional information is required to determine true widths.The exploration programs were designed and managed locally by Dofinta Bondé and David Legault, Mana Mineral's Exploration Chief Geologists, David Lalonde, Deputy Exploration Manager, and Richard Roy P Geo, Exploration Manager, and guided and supervised under the direction of Michel Crevier, P.Geo MScA, Vice-President, Exploration and Mine Geology and SEMAFO's Qualified Person who has reviewed this press release for accuracy and compliance with National Instrument 43-101.All individual core samples represent approximately one-meter in length of core, which was sawed in half. Half of the core is kept on site for reference and its counterpart is sent for preparation and gold assaying at the ALS Chemex laboratories in Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso. Each sample is fire-assayed for gold content on a 50-gram sub-sample at the same ALS Chemex laboratories. In addition to ALS Chemex's own QA/QC (Quality Assurance/Quality Control) program, an internal quality control and quality assurance program is in place throughout the sampling program, using blind duplicates, blanks and recognized industry standards.About SEMAFO SEMAFO is a Canadian-based mining company with gold production and exploration activities in West Africa. The Corporation currently operates three gold mines: the Mana Mine in Burkina Faso, the Samira Hill Mine in Niger and the Kiniero Mine in Guinea. SEMAFO is committed to evolve in a conscientious manner to become a major player in its geographical area of interest. SEMAFO's strategic focus is to maximize shareholder value by effectively managing its existing assets as well as pursuing organic and strategic growth opportunities.CAUTION CONCERNING FORWARD-LOOKING STATEMENTSThis press release contains forward-looking statements. Forward-looking statements involve known and unknown risks, uncertainties and assumptions and accordingly, actual results and future events could differ materially from those expressed or implied in such statements. You are hence cautioned not to place undue reliance on forward-looking statements. Forward-looking statements include words or expressions such as "further", "expand", "ongoing", "suggests", "remain", "pending", "could", "scheduled", "continue" and other similar words or expressions. Factors that could cause future results or events to differ materially from current expectations expressed or implied by the forward-looking statements include the ability of WDC319 to suggest a mineralized plunge similar to the central portion of the Wona Main zone, the ability of the trend to which WDC319 belongs to suggest the presence of a second wide ore shoot plunging slightly north and to hold a large area of wide gold mineralization, the ability to execute on our strategic focus, fluctuation in the price of currencies, gold or operating costs, mining industry risks, uncertainty as to calculation of mineral reserves and resources, delays, political and social stability in Africa (including our ability to maintain or renew licenses and permits) and other risks described in SEMAFO's documents filed with Canadian securities regulatory authorities. You can find further information with respect to these and other risks in SEMAFO's 2010 Annual MD&A and 2010 Annual Information Form, as updated in SEMAFO's 2011 First Quarter MD&A and 2011 Second Quarter MD&A, and other filings made with Canadian securities regulatory authorities and available at www.sedar.com. These documents are also available on our website at www.semafo.com. SEMAFO disclaims any obligation to update or revise these forward-looking statements, except as required by applicable law. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION PLEASE CONTACT: Sofia St LaurentSEMAFOCommunications+1 (514) 744 4408North America Toll-Free: 1 (888) 744 4408Email: sstlaurent@semafo.comORBrunswick Group StockholmMaria Bang+46 (8) 410 32 189mbang@brunswickgroup.com