It is deduced from reading the Statements that, before these were read, the Commission had heard evidence from witnesses from both sides, for these are quoted, with references.
Also, it is deduced that the books referred to, written by the Livingstone brothers and the Jalla brothers, and others, were made available to the two Counsels.
Unfortunately, there is no record available of the "witness statements", and the books are now rare. A list off some of the books is given under "References" - click on that Tab on the left of your screen.
Perhaps, in time, more information will come to light, particularly from Zambian and British Archives. Or perhaps not. We shall be doing no research on this, but if you have anything that could usefully be added, do please get in touch.
The Commissioner was Sir Philip MacDonell, a very experienced retired colonial judge. The Secretray was Glyn Jones, a colonial administrator who had spent some years in Barotseland. Counsel for the Barotse was a 32-year-old colonial administrator, Gervas Clay, who had spent some years in Barotseland, and had been required, beofre joining the Administration, to do a one-year post-grad course in Jurisprudence at Oxford (as probably had Glyn Jones). Counsel for the Lovale and the Lunda was George Suckling, who had set up (at Chitokoloki in the Balovale District) a mission in 1914 and then a school in 1922, and had run it ever since. For more on these four men, see the LINKS tab on the left of your screen.
The purpose of this Website is to make available the statements of Counsel representing each side. The hearings took place in early 1939, but due to the outbreak of war, the judgement was not published until 30 months later, in the Northern Rhodesia Gazette, No. 1041 (Vol. XXXXI, No. 38) on 9th July, 1941.
You may have read the brief outline on our HomePage, and you will have read the above; but it is suggested you also have a look at our "Background" page before getting stuck in to the "Statements", of which George Suckling's was first.