Real Madrid forward, Cristiano Ronaldo says he will work to live up to the honour and responsibility of having an airport on his home island of Madeira renamed after him.
Following the decision to officially name the airport, after Ronaldo, it is now called the “Aeroporto Internacional da Madeira, Cristiano Ronaldo.”
The decision was reached by Local Regional Government chief, Miguel Albuquerque after Ronaldo captained Portugal to the Euro 2016 success last summer.
Amid criticism of the idea from both locals on the island and politicians on Portugal’s mainland, Portuguese President Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa and Prime Minister Antonio Costa both attended the ceremony.
The Portugal captain was quoted by O Jogo as saying, “Thank you for being here in my honour.
“To see my name given to this airport is something very special, everyone knows that I am proud of my land and my country.
“I thank a lot the president of the regional government, who had the courage and strength to do this. My friend Miguel Albuquerque, I never asked for this, but I am very happy and honoured.
“I know that there were some people who did not agree, but I am not a hypocrite and I accept that some of those are here at this moment.
“That is all OK, we are all free, we live in a democracy and everyone has the right to their own opinion. I always prefer for those who have a position to say it openly, and not hide behind someone who speaks for them.
“I know the responsibility I have. I will always try to dignify Portugal and especially Madeira with dedication and a spirit of sacrifice and passion.”
President Rebelo de Sousa said at the ceremony that “genius” Ronaldo “will always be an example” and that the renaming of the airport “was an exceptional decision for an exceptional personality, who we are convinced will never disappoint us.”