Ronaldo was inspired by the story of a seven-year-old boy named Martunis who survived the deadly tsunami in Aceh because he had been stuck in mangrove trees, the minister said during the launch of "save mangrove" campaign led by President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono and attended by Ronaldo, here, Wednesday.
Martunis was wearing a red-and-green Portuguese team jersey with Ronalo`s name on it when he was found in a beach after he had floated at sea for 19 days.
"And since then, Ronaldo has been quite close to Martunis and mangroves," the minister said.
Ronaldo visited Martunis in Aceh in 2008 and give him scholarships for education.
"Ronaldo also once gave Martunis a mobile phone, which was later gone," the minister.
Minister Hasan on the occasion presented a certificate naming Ronaldo as an envoy for the preservation of mangroves.
"Thank you President Yudhoyono. I am pleased to come to Indonesia. Hopefully our event in Bali could spread our mangrove preservation message," Ronaldo said.(*)