Saudi Arabia is likely to become the hub of Pakistani politics as ousted prime minister Nawaz Sharif is set to leave for the kingdom on Saturday (today) while his brother Shahbaz Sharif and Railways Minister Khawaja Saad Rafique are already there.

Although the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz is reluctant to officially state anything about the party chief’s departure, a seat has been booked in Nawaz Sharif’s name for a Jeddah-bound flight for Saturday.

A public meeting he was to address in Sargodha on Sunday (Dec 31) has been rescheduled for Jan 6 because of his unavailability.

The Punjab chief minister is already in Saudi Arabia on an “official” visit. The Saudi government had sent a special plane for his travel to the kingdom on Wednesday. He is believed to have prepared the ground for the visit of his elder brother.

Nawaz Sharif will meet the top Saudi leadership, including King Salman and Crown Prince Muhammad bin Salman, and “discuss with them various aspects of friendly relationship between Pakistan and Saudi Arabia”, a family friend said, but did not elaborate further.