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Mātai Smith

Presenter, Reporter [Rongowhakaata, Ngāi Tāmanuhiri, Ngāti Kahungunu ki Te Wairoa]

Mātai Smith began his screen career reporting on Marae. He was a long-running host of pioneering te reo children's show Pūkana and later co-hosted breakfast TV staple Good Morning (where he introduced te reo, and was hypnotised). Smith fronted popular Māori TV talent quest Homai Te Pakipaki, winning Best Presenter at the 2012 NZ TV Awards. He is currently Native Affairs’ Australian correspondent.

Kura kaupapa Māori (Māori immersion schoolchildren) had nowhere to go to watch shows that would reflect them, show them and also hear them speak te reo, and so Pūkana became that vehicle to provide them with content that reflects the world they were growing up in. Mātai Smith on Pūkana, New Zealand television's first te reo show for kids