Goodluck Ebele Jonathan was born on November 20, 1957 in Bayelsa state.
He worked as an education inspector, lecturer and environmental-protection officer before he ventured into politics in 1998.
Jonathan holds a BSc degree in zoology, an MSc degree in hydrobiology and fisheries biology and a PhD degree in zoology from the University of Port Harcourt.
He served as deputy governor of Bayelsa alongside Governor Diepreye Alamieyeseigha on the platform of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP ) in 1999.
In December 2005, Jonathan, who was deputy governor at the time, was sworn in as governor of Bayelsa state upon the impeachment of the Governor Diepreye Alamieyeseigha by the Bayelsa state House of Assembly after being charged with money laundering in the United Kingdom.
On May 29, 2007, Jonathan was sworn in as the vice-president of Nigerian under the President Yar'Adua administration.
After President Yar'Adua went to Saudi Arabia in November 2009 for medical treatment, the Nigerian Senate named Jonathan as acting president on February 9, 2010.
Following President Umaru Yar'Adua's death on May 5, 2010, Goodluck Jonathan was sworn in as the acting president of the Federal Republic of Nigeria on May 6, 2010, becoming Nigeria's 14th head of state.
On May 18, 2010, the National Assembly approved Jonathan's nomination of former Kaduna state governor, Namadi Sambo for the position of vice-president.
In 2011, Jonathan contested and won the 2011 presidential election against Muhammadu Buhari with 59% of the votes.
But the Jonathan regime experienced serious security challenges posed by constant Boko Haram bombings which made the administration unpopular especially in northern Nigeria.
On May 14, 2013, Jonathan declared a state of emergency in three northeastern Nigerian states, Borno, Yobe, and Adamawa, to check the activities of Boko Haram.
His administration came under serious criticism after about 276 female students were kidnapped from a government secondary school in the town of Chibok in Borno state by the Boko Haram group.
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Jonathan was defeated in the 2015 presidential election by Muhammadu Buhari who was sworn in to succeed him on 29 May 2015.
After Jonathan conceded defeat, he was noted for a statement he issued on March 31, 2015 that: "Nobody’s ambition is worth the blood of any Nigerian.”
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