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Adamec joined the Presidium in March 1987 and served as the prime minister of the Czech Socialist Republic from March 1987 to 1988. Upon the retirement of Prime MinisterLubomír Štrougal on 12 October 1988, he assumed the role, thus serving as the last Communist prime minister of Czechoslovakia. He served in the post from 12 October 1988 to 7 December 1989. Marián Čalfa succeeded Adamec as prime minister.
The Velvet Revolution lasted from 17 November to 29 December 1989. During the Velvet Revolution student protesters took to the streets of Prague in what became an overthrow of the government. Large demonstrations that occurred on 25 and 26 November, and a public strike on 27 November, pushed the communist regime into holding a conference with the Civic Forum. The Forum demanded that Adamec form a new government—that would include existing political parties and Civic Forum. The federal government under Adamec had been in contact with different leaders since 21 November and on 26 November, Adamec even addressed the crowds on Letná.