ACT leader David Seymour labels Ihumātao protesters a nuisance

ACT leader David Seymour has labelled the Ihumātao protesters a "nuisance", saying they're stopping New Zealanders from getting on with their days.

The crowd protesting the construction of a Fletcher Building housing development on a significant historical site considered sacred by local hapū and iwi had swelled to several hundred.

Tensions at the site are growing - seven people were arrested on Thursday night after blocking northbound lanes on George Bolt Memorial Dr.

Seymour said, in a Facebook post, that the protesters were "unlawfully" occupying the private land.

"But the law isn't on their side," he wrote. "To make their point, a motley crew of protesters, including socialists and prison abolitionists, have been blocking roads and motorways, preventing ordinary New Zealanders from going about their lives, and generally making a nuisance of themselves.

"The protesters need to leave the site and let Fletcher Building exercise their property rights and get on with building desperately needed houses for Aucklanders."

Human Rights Commissioners headed to the site

Two Human Rights Commissioners will attend the protests on Friday. Chief Commissioner Paul Hunt and equal employment opportunities Commissioner Saunoamaali'i Karanina Sumeo said in a statement the dispute is raising "profound and difficult issues" for the country.

"We are here to respectfully look, listen and learn," they said.

He said the Human Rights Commission acknowledges the historic injustices that have led to the protests.

"In working towards a lasting solution, there are complex cultural, legal, economic, political, historical and human rights aspects to this case that need to be considered."

Hunt said the commission is urgently looking at how international human rights thinking could lead to a solution.

"New Zealand has endorsed the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous People, which provides valuable guidance."

Several people have called on the Prime Minister and Government to get involved, despite Jacinda Ardern saying her hands are tied.

"There are several issues facing the mana whenua and all other participants involved in the dispute," Hunt said.