Semiu Akinbami, the lead counsel on the fundamental human right case bordering on the use of hijab in Ogun State public schools, Monday, took a swipe at different parties seeking to join the case describing them as busybodies.
A 9-year-old girl, Aishat Abdul-Aleem, in a suit number AB/527/2018, had instituted a fundamental human right case against the Ogun State government and four others over the use of hijab in Gateway Junior Secondary School, Abeokuta, Ogun State.
Since the court started, several bodies including individuals have sought to join the matter as interested parties and most recently, one Michael Akinbode and Tunde Olutayo-Aro.
At the resumed hearing, Monday, Akinbami, who has filed a counter affidavit praying the court not to join the parties describing them as busybodies wondered what the interest of the applicants is in the matter.
Akinbami said the parties seeking to join the suit are not touched or concerned by the suit, adding that their rights cannot be violated by the case.
He further argued that the applicants have not shown by facts of what they stand to lose if they are not joined, saying they are not necessary or desirable parties to be joined.
Although the applications have not to be argued as they applicants were yet to file their counter-affidavit, when the judge asked why Akinbami did not want the parties to join, he said, “They have not satisfied the issue of law as to what their interest is in the matter or are their rights being violated?
“You must show that the judgment will affect you. Yes, the court can allow joiners but they must show sufficient interest. You need to satisfy the court about your interest in the matter.
“The parties seeking to join this case have not satisfied the position of the law. If their rights are violated, how are they affected my Lord? They want to join for what purpose? I think they are busybodies.
“She did not say all students must use hijab, Christians and even Muslims are not to be compelled to use hijab,” he said.
The counsel to the defendants, Yetunde Oresanya, however, argued that the parties be allowed to join the case irrespective of whether they have interest in the case or not in line with nature of the fundamental human right legal procedure.