The Prime Minister has admonished Act Party Leader David Seymour for meeting with protest representatives.
Earlier today Seymour said he had met some of the anti-mandate protesters' leadership, who were feeling like they were not being listened to.
It comes on day nine of the protesters' occupation on Parliament grounds, with
towing of the hundreds of illegally parked vehicles still yet to begin.
This afternoon Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said she did not think it was responsible for Seymour to meet with protest representatives.
"I don't think it was a responsible thing to do for a party that champions law and order," she said.
"Every party should be focused on two things, making sure we're working hard to protect New Zealanders during this pandemic and second thing is that there is activity outside that has tipped into illegal activity."
"The focus needs to be removing the illegal activity blocking Wellingtonians lives."
She repeated her plea to the protesters to "go home."
Act leader David Seymour said earlier he had met with some of the anti-mandate protesters' leadership, and said it's time for a "mature conversation" about de-escalation.
The Act leader said he'd met with several dozen people linked to the protest, and changed his mind after a local bar owner told him the protest situation was changing and the worst elements had left.
"I've met with an intermediary to deliver that message...they've asked not to be identified," Seymour said.
"A large part of their concern is they feel no one's listening to them."
Seymour said political leaders would not meet with protest leaders as along as abusive and threatening behaviour continued.
He said on the other hand, dehumanising protesters or calling them "feral" was highly unhelpful.
"One of the things that's clear is it's becoming increasingly organised."
Meanwhile National recently lodged a notice of a motion of no confidence in Parliament's Speaker Trevor Mallard over his handling of the Parliament protesters.
Chris Bishop today described Mallard's behaviour as "unedifying, embarrassing and childish" after the sprinklers were turned on and protesters were subjected to Barry Manilow music.
"Many New Zealanders are appalled and so are we," Bishop said.
"You can disagree with people without disrespecting them, and Mr Mallard's petulant behaviour has only inflamed an already tense situation."
National has repeatedly sought motions of no-confidence in Mallard with no success.
It's been well over a week since Covid response protesters first brought parts of Wellington city to a standstill, and police and council have now signalled they will be taking a firmer line.
Wellington City Council has now issued more than 500 parking fines so far, while Police Commissioner Andrew Coster said this morning the towing of illegally parked vehicles would begin today.
The principal of a nearby Wellington school said they are advising all staff and students to take alternative routes to school after "confronting" experiences with anti-mandate protesters at the start of the protests.
Queen Margaret College principal Jayne-Ann Young said uniformed children on the way to school, some under 10, were verbally abused for wearing masks.
"People were coming up to them, very close, unmasked, and they were being told masks were unnecessary, Covid is not a problem and it's all just rubbish."
She said this was disappointing and giving misinformation to young people who have been getting clear messages otherwise.
About a kilometre away from the protests on the Parliament lawn, classes and activities at the Wellington girls' school are otherwise unaffected.
Young said the ongoing blockade is now more of an inconvenience for everyone.
Wellington City Council said it yesterday issued about 335 tickets to illegally parked vehicles in the area of the protest, bringing the total to more than 500 fines since the protest began.
Of the 500 tickets issued, Wellington City Council spokesman Richard MacLean said five fines have been paid and two have been appealed.
In an update this morning they said a dedicated council team has been established to address the wide-ranging operational issues with the protest.
The statement said the council team was following "every possible route and option", but for security reasons they were unable to provide detailed information at this time.
"Where we can, we will keep Wellingtonians informed of developments, but we ask for your patience and tolerance while we work to resolve this difficult situation."
Police Commissioner Andrew Coster also said this morning towing trucks will begin removing vehicles today.
Speaking with Mike Hosking, he said they've also appealed for more assistance including from the New Zealand Defence Force for their towing capabilities.
On whether the police were doing enough he said it was important they took a measured approach.
"If we went in there early on guns blazing that we would have had a much messier and problematic situation on our hands.
"What we need here is a resolution that means normal people can go about their normal lives safely and that calls for a measured approach on police's behalf."
Appearing on AM earlier, Coster said towies would be required to move the vehicles, but they would be supported by police officers.
"We are not seeking an escalation here, we just need to clear the roads," he said.
"We are engaging with protesters about the manner of the protest. But there has to be a line here - this can't go on indefinitely."
The Prime Minister was also asked about the New Zealand Defence Force providing aid to tow vehicles, but said the equipment they have may not be suitable for the urban task.