An “inspiring” newsreader has made history as the first person with a Māori face tattoo to present primetime news.
Oriini Kaipara hosted Newshub’s 6 o’clock news on Monday (December 27) to fill in for regular hosts Sam Hayes and Mike McRoberts. She is set to take up a permanent role for the news outlet’s 4.30pm bulletin but hopes to become a presenter for the 6.00pm slot.
Kaipara explained that she got the tattoo in 2017 after a DNA test revealed she was 100 per cent Māori. The moko kauae – a sacred lower chin tattoo worn by Māori women – garnered much positive attention online, with one expressing the importance of “preserving culture in these kinds of diverse, human and beautiful ways.”
Talking to Stuff, she said: “It’s really exciting. I’m really enjoying it. I’m not speechless, but it’s a buzz. I am proud of how far I’ve come in being able to anchor 6pm right now.”
The 37-year-old first made headlines when she presented TVNZ’s midday broadcast in 2019.
“It’s definitely a step forward, and a step-up. If there was a goal for me, it would be anchoring prime time news, and that’s happened,” she said.
“We’ve got a good team at Newshub, I don’t feel the pressure as much as I used to when I first started out in journalism. But that comes with doing the hard yards, and then actually realising it and doing it is really exciting.”