Prof. Dr. M.A. Matin
Born on 13th November 1937 in the District of Kurigram, Professor M A Matin, was one of the most influential and renowned politicians of the country who dedicated his whole life to the betterment of the people of his country through his herculean philanthropic and humanitarian works.
Professor Matin was the elected President of the Ophthalmological Society of Bangladesh for 18 years between 1975 and 1995. As the President of Ophthalmological Society of Bangladesh, Professor Matin was instrumental in establishing the National Institute of Ophthalmology at Dhaka for the postgraduate education and training of young ophthalmologists and OSB Eye Hospital and OSB Under-5 Clinic in Dhaka for free treatment of the poor patients of Bangladesh.
In various parts of rural Bangladesh, Professor Matin has established 20 low-cost eye hospitals for making the appropriate ophthalmic services accessible and affordable to the poor people of Bangladesh. He has also established a Private Medical College (North Bengal Medical College) in Sirajganj District in the year 2000.
However, founding university of South Asia in 2003, has turned out to be the one institution founded by Professor Matin that had the most far reaching impact in Bangladesh society. It is the university of South Asia that carries his legacy best in its dedication and commitment in providing quality education for Bangladeshi youth at an affordable cost.
He was the President of Bangladesh College of Physicians and Surgeons for 2 consecutive terms (1981-1985), Founder Secretary General of Bangladesh National Society for the Blind, Vice-Chairman of Bangladesh Medical Research Council, Chairman of the International Centre for Diarrhoeal Diseases Research, Public Administration Training Centre. He was also one of the Vice-Chairmen of the Asia-Pacific Academy of Ophthalmology (APAO). He was also elected as Vice-President of World Health Assembly in the year 1988, held in Geneva, Switzerland.
In 1978, Professor Matin became a Deputy Adviser to the President of Bangladesh in the Ministry of Health and Family welfare. He then became the Minister of Health of Government of Bangladesh. He remained an important Member of the Cabinet till August 1989, when he resigned from the post of the Deputy Prime Minister of the Government of Bangladesh. He has been elected four times as Member of Bangladesh Parliament (1979, 1986, 1988 and 2001). During the ten years of his tenure as Minister and Deputy Prime Minister, in addition to being the Health Minister, he was also the Education Minister, Home Minister, Commerce Minister, Works Minister and Communication Minister. He is an elected Ex- Member of Parliament from Shahzadpur Upozilla (67-Sirajganj-7) and Sirajganj Sadar Upozila (67-Sirajganj-2) i.e from two constituencies in Sirajgnaj District. Till his death on 12 June 2012, at his Shantinagar residence, Professor Matin was the Vice- Chancellor of the University of South Asia, Banani, Dhaka.
All of us from University of South Asia miss him so much.