Shocking moment radio host claims Maori people are 'stone-age'

Shocking moment a racist caller on a prime time radio show claimed Maori men are ‘genetically predisposed to crime’ and naturally do badly in school – before the host THANKED him and slammed their ‘stone-age culture’

  • Major NZ radio network Magic Talk allowed a highly offensive rant to air live
  • The caller labelled Maori people ‘genetically predisposed to crime and alcohol’
  • Backlash was severe, with multiple advertisers quick to condemn Magic Talk
  • Former Auckland Mayor and host John Banks inexplicably agreed with the caller 
  • Mr Banks has since been dumped by Magic Talk as an on-air radio presenter

A major radio network is facing a huge backlash after broadcasting profoundly racist views during a live talk-back show.

A Magic Talk Radio caller in New Zealand described Maori people as ‘genetically predisposed to crime, alcohol and under performance educationally’ as well as being ‘stone-age people’ in a highly offensive on-air rant.

Magic Talk presenter John Banks, a former Auckland mayor and MP, didn’t stop the rant on Tuesday.

Instead, Banks thanked the man for his call, before saying ‘if their (Maori) stone-age culture doesn’t change, these people will come through your bathroom window’.

Former Auckland Mayor and MP John Banks (pictured above) has come under-fire after agreeing with a on-air caller who delivered a highly offensive racist rant

The exchange was posted on social media site TikTok by a horrified listener, before quickly spreading to other social media platforms.

By Wednesday, outraged social media users were petitioning Magic Talk advertisers to pull their support of the station.

Telecommunications giant Vodafone and TradeMe, a major online sales website, responded by saying they would boycott the station.

Magic Talk holds the rights to broadcast Black Caps matches, and New Zealand Cricket also said they were ‘disgusted and appalled by an indefensibly racist’ exchange.

Racism in New Zealand has been at the forefront since the Black Lives Matter movement began in America and spread overseas (pictured, a BLM protest in Auckland in June)

Banks (pictured above) later delivered a grovelling on-air apology, but was dumped by NZ radio network Magic Talk as a presenter


Caller named Richard: ‘Maori are victims of their own genetic background. They are genetically predisposed to crime, alcohol and underpeformance educationally.

‘They just do not have the – they are stone age people from a stone age culture. And I’m not interested one bit and neither have my children been interested in their stone age culture.’

Banks: ‘Just a minute, just a minute. Your children need to get used to their stone age culture, because if their stone age culture doesn’t change, these people will come through your bathroom window.’

Richard: ‘Exactly’.

Banks: ‘Exactly, Richard. Thanks for the call.’ 

NZC suggested it could walk away from its ongoing broadcast deal, saying ‘should strong action not be taken NZC reserves its right to review its relationship with Magic Talk’. 

A third major sponsor, Kiwibank, said it was ‘removing our ads from the Magic Talk website and we’ll be talking directly with (station owner) MediaWorks on how they could better encourage a diverse and inclusive NZ’.

Following a 30-year political career including two stints as a cabinet minister, Banks is well known in New Zealand for his right-wing views.

Banks, 74, later said he ‘wasn’t racist’ in a grovelling on-air apology, before admitting his views ‘could have been misconstrued as racist’.

‘I didn’t pick it up at the time, here when you’re broadcasting, you’re talking to producers, you’re talking to bosses,’ Banks said.

The live chat caused outrage on social media (pictured above) with Magic Talk Radio widely condemned

A horrified social media user (pictured) shared her shock at hearing the racist exchange as she listened to the radio in her car

‘I spoke to people later in the show who disagreed with the man and I picked it up then, however this wasn’t enough to demonstrate that his comments were wrong and racist.’

Magic Talk announced on Wednesday they had since dumped Banks as an on-air presenter.

A woman who recorded the vile exchange and posted it online said that it proved ‘racism in New Zealand is still very much here.’ 

The show had been discussing Orange Tamariki, New Zealand’s Ministry for Children, and its new all-Maori board of advisors.

‘The talkback environment can be robust and opinionated, however we recognise comments broadcast yesterday during a call discussing the departure of Oranga Tamariki’s CEO were hurtful,’ Magic Talk wrote on Twitter. 

Magic Talk later released a statement on social media, admitting the ‘robust conversation’ was hurtful

Advertiser Vodafone responded to a concerned customer online, saying: ‘Yes, we’re suspending advertising with Magic Talk, and we will be discussing our longer term approach with our partners,;

Kiwibank wrote in a reply: ‘We condemn racism in any form. We’ve removed our ads on the Magic Talk website and we’ll be talking directly with MediaWorks on how they could better encourage a diverse and inclusive NZ.’ 

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