Laos is a country located in Southeast Asia. The current government of Laos came to power following the Laotian Civil War (1953-1975), when the Communist Pathet Lao movement won the war and came to power with the abdication of King Sisavang Vatthana (1907-?). In August of 1991 a constitution was accepted for the country. This constitution, among other things, officially specifies the functions and powers of the various parts of government, including the prime minister.
Some of the prime ministers of Laos:
Kaysone Phomvihane (1920-1992) was the first Prime Minister of Laos under the rule of the Communist Pathet Lao. He is also the longest serving of all the prime ministers, having served before the five year term limit was implemented. He was the prime minister for 15 years and 250 days starting on December 8th, 1975 and ending on August 15th, 1991. Phomvihane served as the first general secretary from 1955 until 1992 and also briefly served as the second president of the country from 1991 to 1992. Kaysone Phomvihane went to law school at Hanoi University but dropped out with fellow future leader of the Pathet Lao Nouhak Phoumsavan (1910-2008) to fight the colonists, joining the Pathet Lao movement shortly after. During his fight against the French and later during the civil war he worked as minister of defense for the Neo Lao Issara political arm of the Pathet Lao. By 1955 he became the leader of the Pathet Lao after being critical to setting up their headquarters at Sam Neua. As the leader of the Pathet Lao, he eventually led the communist to victory in the civil war and subsequently became prime minister. Kaysone Phomvihane's biggest accomplishment as prime minister was cultivating deeper ties with neighboring communist Vietnam and helping to start the demarcation process between their borders that finally finished in 2007. Following his death the government constructed a museum in the capital of Vientiane in Kaysone's honor, which Vietnam helped to fund.
Thongloun Sisoulith (Incumbent)
Thongloun Sisoulith is the seventh and incumbent Prime Minister of Laos. He started his term as prime minister of the country on April 20th, 2016. Sisoulith studied at the Pedagogical College of Neo Lao Hak Sat in the city of Houaphan from 1962 to 1969. He then went on to study at Herzen State Pedagogical University of Russia in Saint Petersburg from 1973 to 1978. Following that he worked as a professor at Vientiane University and then first went into politics as the Secretary to the Minister of Education and the Director of the External Relations Division in the Ministry of Education. He then went back to Russia to get his doctorate in the history of international relations from the Russian Academy of Sciences in Moscow from 1981 to 1984. Following his graduation he then worked his way up the government as the Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs, Minister of Labour and Social Welfare and becoming a member of the National Assembly by 1998. In 2001 he was made Deputy Prime Minister, a post he would hold until becoming prime minister in 2016. During his time as the Deputy Prime Minister he also worked as the President of the State Planning Committee and as the Minister of Foreign Affairs.
The election and duties of the prime minister of Laos:
The prime minister is elected by the National Assembly after being nominated by the president of Laos to serve a five year term. The prime minister of Laos is the head of government and holds the highest office within the country's Central Government. The prime minister is one of the nine members of the Politburo of the Lao People's Revolutionary Party, which is one of the main groups that determines the government's policies. The prime minister is responsible to the National Assembly, must give them activity reports on the government, is supervised by the Standing Committee of the National Assembly and can be questioned by the deputies of the National Assembly.