Choummaly Sayasone

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Choummaly Sayasone
ຈູມມະລີ ໄຊຍະສອນ
General Secretary of the Lao People's Revolutionary Party
In office
21 March 2006 – 22 January 2016
Preceded byKhamtai Siphandone (as Chairman)
Succeeded byBounnhang Vorachith
5th President of Laos
In office
8 June 2006 – 20 April 2016
Prime MinisterBouasone Bouphavanh
Thongsing Thammavong
Vice PresidentBounnhang Vorachith
Preceded byKhamtai Siphandon
Succeeded byBounnhang Vorachith
3rd Vice President of Laos
In office
27 March 2001 – 8 June 2006
PresidentKhamtai Siphandon
Preceded byOudom Khattigna
Succeeded byBounnhang Vorachith
Minister of National Defence
In office
15 August 1991 – 27 March 2001
Prime MinisterBounnhang Vorachith
Sisavath Keobounphanh
Khamtai Siphandon
Preceded byKhamtai Siphandon
Succeeded byDouangchay Phichit
Personal details
Born (1936-03-06) 6 March 1936 (age 87)
Attapeu, French Protectorate of Laos, French Indochina
Political party Lao People's Revolutionary Party
SpouseKeosaychay Sayasone (m. 1993; died 2021)
Military service
Allegiance Laos

Lieutenant General Choummaly Sayasone (Lao: ຈູມມະລີ ໄຊຍະສອນ; born 6 March 1936) is a Laotian politician who was General Secretary (supreme leader) of the Lao People's Revolutionary Party (LPRP) and President of Laos (head of state) from 2006 to 2016.


Choummaly Sayasone was born in Attapeu. He joined the Party's Politburo in 1991 and was Minister of Defence from 1991 to 2001. Subsequently he was the third Vice President of Laos from 2001 to 2006.

He was elected as the LPRP's General Secretary on 21 March 2006, in the aftermath of the Party's 8th Congress, by the first plenum of the eighth Central Committee, succeeding Khamtai Siphandone as de facto leader of Laos. He subsequently succeeded Siphandon as the 6th President of Laos on 8 June 2006.

In March 2011, he was reelected to his position as the LPRP's General Secretary at the 9th LPRP Congress. In June 2011, he was re-elected as President of Laos at the seventh National Assembly.[1] He did not seek re-election to the LPRP Central Committee at the 10th LPRP Congress in January 2016, indicating his retirement.[2] Bounnhang Vorachit was elected to succeed him as General Secretary on 22 January 2016.[3]

On 4 April 2021, Sayasone and his family were on a yacht in Nam Ngum Lake, when there was a storm and the vessel capsized. Although initially feared dead,[4] Sayasone survived, but nine people died, including his wife, Keosaychay Sayasone, and his son.[5][6]

Awards and honors[edit]


  1. ^ Profile: President of Laos Choummaly Sayasone
  2. ^ Petty, Martin (22 January 2016). "Laos PM, party boss set for political exit after congress vote". Yahoo! News. Reuters.
  3. ^ "Ruling communists in Laos promote VP as country's new leader". Yahoo! News. Associated Press. 22 January 2016.
  4. ^ "Yacht capsizes near Lao capital, casualties including former president feared: witnesses". Xinhua News Agency. 4 April 2021.
  5. ^ "Ex-Lao president's wife, son drown when boat overturns". Bangkok Post. 5 April 2021. Retrieved 5 April 2021.
  6. ^ "Laos boat tragedy: Four bodies recovered; former president Choummaly has been rescued after yacht mishap in lake near Vientiane". The Star. 4 April 2021. Retrieved 5 April 2021.
  7. ^ "President Choummaly pays a state visit to Cuba". Lao News Agency. 2015-10-05. Retrieved 2023-08-15.
  8. ^ "Lao Leader Visits Viet Nam for Closer Ties". Saigon News. 2006-06-20. Retrieved 2023-08-15.
Party political offices
Preceded by General Secretary of the People's Revolutionary Party
Succeeded by
Political offices
Preceded by Minister for Defence
Succeeded by
Preceded by Vice President of Laos
Succeeded by
Preceded by President of Laos