Te Karere celebrates 40 years of presenting te ao Māori in te reo Māori short stories on state television.
Tini Molyneux says it’s been a long way from when Whai Ngata, Purewa Biddle and Derek Fox, soon to be joined by Wena Harawira, composed a short daily bulletin.
She remembers journalists like Tā Hemi Henare, Kingi Ihaka, John Rangihau and Dick Stirling who were extremely eloquent in both Te Reo Maori and Queen’s English, as well as non-speakers like Hana Te Hemara and her fellow Nga Tamatoa who lobbied for the program.
The Te Karere team had to work in a skeptical and sometimes hostile environment.
“The time allotted to them for the te reo was very minimal. There was a bit of confusion within the newsroom as to why this program had even been considered, so it wasn’t easy to combat the attitudes that supported them. A lot of people say maybe it was racism, but when I look back on it now, I think a lot of it was ignorance,” Ms Molyneux said.
She says Te Karere has made a major contribution to today’s broadcast environment where there is much more spoken Maori, and Pākehā journalists are trying to pronounce kupu correctly.