The Greek Prime Minister is the country’s Head of Government, directly at the helm of the Greek Cabinet. The position of the Prime Minister was created in 1843 after a revolution agitated for a constitution from the monarchy headed by King Otto. From 1967 to 1974, Greece was ruled by a military dictatorship, after which democracy was restored in Greece. The Prime Minister is a member of the Ministerial Council and together with the Ministers they make government decisions. The prime minister heads the majority party in the legislature, and unites the government.
Prime Ministers Of Greece Since 1974
Konstantinos G. Karamanlis (1974-1980)
Konstantinos G. Karamanlis served as the Greek Prime Minister from 1955 to 1963 and held the position again in 1974 serving till 1980. He was born on March 8, 1907, to a schoolteacher. He studied law at the University of Athens. His entry into politics saw him elected to the legislature to represent Sérres under the People’s Party in 1935. He held several ministerial posts and gained a reputation for efficiency until he became Prime Minister in 1955. He resigned in 1963 after a conflict with the monarchy and left the country for Paris. Karamanlis became Prime Minister of an interim government after the fall of the military dictatorship in 1974. He oversaw the country’s return to democracy and reinstated the constitution. He signed a new Constitution in 1975 and oversaw a referendum which abolished the monarchy. Karamanlis also undertook economic reforms and averted a war with Turkey. He is hailed for reinstating democracy in Greece and for agitating for the country’s membership in the European Union. He died on April 23, 1998, in Athens, Greece.
Georgios Rallis (1980-1981)
Georgios Rallis was the Greek Prime Minister from 1980-1981. He was born on December 26, 1918, in Athens, Greece and he studied Law and Political Sciences at the University of Athens. He was elected to the country’s legislature in 1950 under the People’s Party and was re-elected until the 1967 dictatorship, except in 1958. He served a Minister in various departments, and he was sent into exile in Kasos for resisting the military junta. Under Karamanlis, Rallis served as Minister for Interior, Minister in the office of the Prime Minister, Minister for National Education and Religious Affairs, Minister for Coordination and Minister for Foreign Affairs. He became the leader of the New Democracy Party and Prime Minister in 1980. He oversaw the country’s integration with the then European Economic Community. Rallis is praised for his gentleness, integrity, and democracy. He died on March 15, 2006, of heart failure.
Andreas Papandreou (1993-1996)
Andreas Papandreou served as the country’s Prime Minister from 1981 to 1989 and again from 1993 to 1996. He was born in Chios, Greece on February 5, 1919, and he studied at the Kapodistrian University of Athens before leaving for the US, where he studied economics at Harvard University and obtained a doctorate. He became a US citizen and taught as a professor in several Universities. In 1959, he was invited back to Greece by Karamanlis on an economic development research assignment, and he was elected to parliament in 1964 after denouncing his American citizenship. He became the Greek Prime Minister in 1981 after the Panhellenic Socialist Movement won the majority seats in Parliament. He attempted to make Greek a socialist state and effect social change but his policies were unsuccessful. Under his tenure, the status of women was improved, a national health service was established, and Communist refugees were allowed back to the country. In his second term, Papandreou was faced by government scandals and failing health, and he died on June 23, 1996.
Xenophon Zolotas (1989 - 1990)
Xenophon Zolotas served as the Greek Prime Minister from 1989 to 1990. He was born on March 26, 1904, in Athens, Greece. Zolotas was an economist who studied at the University of Athens, University of Paris, and Leipzig University. He served as Professor of Economics at Aristotle University of Thessaloniki and Athens University until the military junta took over leadership in the country. He served at the helm of the Bank of Greece and became a non-Party Prime Minister after the 1989 elections failed to give the majority to either of the parties. He is most remembered for his speeches which he gave in English in a bid to show the contributions of Greek to the language. He Died on June 10, 2004, in Athens, Greece.
Other Prime Ministers
The rest of the Greek Prime Ministers are Tzannis Tzannetakis (July to October 1989); Konstantinos Mitsotakis (1990-1993); Konstantinos Simitis (1996-2004); Konstantinos A. Karamanlis (2004-2009); George A. Papandreou (2009-20110; Lucas Papademos (2011-2012); Antonis Samaras (2012-2015), and Alexis Tsipras (2015-Present).
Prime Ministers Of Greece Since 1974
|Prime Ministers of Greece Since 1974||Term(s) in Office|
|Konstantinos G. Karamanlis||1974-1980|
|Andreas Papandreou||1981-1989; 1993-1996|
|Tzannis Tzannetakis||July to October of 1989|
|Konstantinos A. Karamanlis||2004-2009|
|George A. Papandreou||2009-2011|
|Alexis Tsipras (Incumbent)||2015-Present|