Mduduzi Manana in court

The Deputy Minister of Higher Education is appearing in court after he allegedly assaulted a woman at a Johannesburg night club.

Deputy Higher Education Minister Mduduzi Manana. Picture: City of Ekurhuleni.

JOHANNESBURG - Deputy Higher Education Minister Mduduzi Manana has arrived at the Randburg Magistrates Court ahead of his first appearance.

Manana has admitted to assaulting Mandisa Duma at a Johannesburg nightclub at the weekend after she apparently called him gay during an argument.

Police Minister Fikile Mbalula, who has also come under fire for failing to ensure Manana's arrest, is due to speak on the matter again at a press briefing in Cape Town on Thursday afternoon.

It appears Manana snuck into the court through a side entrance while a contingent of journalists waited for him at the front of the court house.

Manana walked through the corridors wearing a tailored, navy blue suit.

He was escorted by court officials.

A few women wearing T-shirts written "Not in my name" are also in court.

Calls have been mounting for Manana to be fired as deputy minister.

Duma claims Manana became angry when they disagreed with him on who should replace President Jacob Zuma in December. Manana then assaulted the woman.

In a statement released on Monday, Manana said he apologised unreservedly to Duma, her family and all South Africans for the incident.

He has also apologised to the Cubana nightclub and urged them to assist the police in their investigation.

_Addition reporting by Monique Mortlock _