MANILA - Former Armed Forces chief Roy Cimatu will remain special envoy to the Middle East until June 30 this year, Executive Secretary Paquito Ochoa Jr. said on Monday.

Ochoa said Cimatu’s appointment was for a “limited period of time” only.

The Presidential Middle East Preparedness Committee (PMEPC), which Cimatu headed, was replaced by Overseas Preparedness and Response Team (OPRT) under Executive Order (EO) 34.

“It’s a case by case assessment. In fact, that is the process when it comes to the appointment of all special envoys,” said Ochoa.

“It’s up to the President to determine later, when the appointment expires, to say whether or not he will reappoint or not appoint a special envoy,” he added.

EO 34 expanded the composition of the crisis team and the scope of its responsibilities to allow the government to respond swiftly to the needs of overseas Filipino caught in political uncertainties and natural disasters in their host countries.

Cimatu will serve out his term until June 30 based on his reappointment by President Aquino III when the new administration took over.

The renewal of Cimatu’s designation is subject to the assessment by the Office of the President. (Jill Beltran/Sunnex)