MANILA – The Office of Civil Defense (OCD) is set to host another simulation exercise (SIMEX) in January next year for Cabinet officials and other executives, this time focusing on a magnitude 7.2 earthquake scenario in Metro Manila.

The objective of the exercise is to demonstrate the leadership and unified decision-making of national leaders after a major disaster, as part of the preparedness measures of the government, the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (NDRRMC) said in a statement Monday.

The target date is Jan. 26, 2023.

This came about following the fourth NDRRMC full council meeting Monday at its headquarters in Camp Aguinaldo in Quezon City, presided by its chair, Defense officer-in-charge Undersecretary Jose Faustino Jr.

The NDRRMC quarterly holds its full council meeting to tackle issues and concerns on the country’s DRRM system.

Also discussed were the rehabilitation and recovery plans for the communities affected by the magnitude 7.0 Abra earthquake, which have been approved during the meeting.

Other pressing concerns were also discussed including updates on the proposed projects for Typhoon Odette and Abra earthquake under the NDRRM Fund, the Proposed Membership of the Philippine Space Agency and the Office of the Vice President (OVP) – Disaster Operations Center to the NDRRMC, and the updates on the selection of new representatives from the civil society organization and private sector to the body were also presented.

"The council also tackled the results of the post disaster needs assessment of the aftermath of Severe Tropical Storm Paeng along with the preparation of the RRPs (rehabilitation and recovery plans) for its affected areas," the NDRRMC said.

Meanwhile, the terms of agreement with the OVP regarding its inclusion to the council have yet to be finalized.

"Regardless, its participation in the relevant NDRRMC TWG/pillar activities, and NDRRMC TMG (technical management group) meetings will continue," the agency added. (PNA)