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Neil Waka


Newsreader and former kickboxer Neil Waka has been a familiar face on Kiwi television. After starting in radio, Waka was encouraged to pursue an on-screen career after joining Telethon in 1988. He started out at TV3, presenting short news bulletins and weekend news when the channel launched in 1989. Alongside TV3's Joanna Paul-Robie, Waka was one of the first Māori newsreaders to appear on prime time television. After 11 years, Waka moved to TV One's news team. In 2010 he left television to work in public relations. A decade later, he returned to the screen to present news and current affairs show Te Ao Tapatahi, on Māori Television.

My first day, it honestly felt like I’d come home. Neil Waka on returning to television on Te Ao Tapatahi, Stuff website, 12 August 2021