ISLAMABAD — Pakistan's anti-graft body on Thursday announced the arrest of the country's former top bureaucrat who served as secretary to ex-Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif over alleged links to a housing scam.

The National Accountability Bureau arrested Fawad Hassan on Thursday in the eastern city of Lahore after questioning him for several hours, it said in a statement.

Hassan is accused of misusing his authority during Sharif's administration by influencing authorities to award contracts for a government-run housing program for low-income citizens to a Lahore-based company with which he had political connections.

The arrest came a day before a judge was set to announce a much-awaited verdict against Sharif and his daughter in a corruption case involving their properties in London.

Sharif's political future has been in limbo since 2017, when the Supreme Court disqualified him for concealing his assets.

Sharif and daughter Maryam Nawaz are in London with Sharif's ailing wife and he has not been able to campaign for his Pakistan Muslim League party, which is trying to regain power by winning the July 25 vote.

Sharif is not running for a seat in parliament as he has been barred by the judiciary from holding office after a court found him guilty of concealing assets abroad. However, his daughter is running for a seat in the National Assembly and her conviction would be another blow to the former ruling party.

Sharif's party faces tough competition from the country's popular former lawmaker Imran Khan, whose Pakistan Tehrik-e-Insaf party is also running for office.

Khan is also seeing to become the country's next prime minister.