Priti Patel will attack the leadership of the Conservative party, blaming the heavy loss in local elections on “those in power and control”, in a speech on Saturday.
The former home secretary is expected to accuse the Tory leadership of having “done a better job of undermining our party” over the past year than Keir Starmer’s Labor party or left-wing campaign groups.
He was due to address the inaugural conference of a group promising to return grassroots control to the Conservatives, the pro-Boris Johnson Conservative Democratic Organization (CDO).
The event, which will also feature speeches from Johnson’s allies Jacob Rees-Mogg and Nadine Dorries, will take place in Bournemouth throughout Saturday.
In extracts of Patel’s speech, seen by BBC News, he is also expected to say that “mistakes and mistakes made by a minority in Westminster have costs. [the] dear party”.
The MP for Witham returned to the Tory backbenches when he resigned in September last year following the election of Liz Truss as party leader.
He is expected to tell the CDO conference that if Conservative leaders spend more time with party chiefs, they will “talk more to people and our values”.
“And maybe if they had done that, last week we wouldn’t have seen 1,000 of our friends and colleagues lose their seats in local elections and many councils fall into Conservative control,” added the former cabinet minister.
“There is no need for the leaders of our party to be dismissed, neglected and ignored.”
Patel is also expected to point the finger at MPs who removed Johnson from No 10, claiming they “took away a political giant who won the vote”.
The CDO insists that it is not a Johnson revivalist group, and that its sole purpose is to make the party more accountable to the rank and file.
While Johnson is reportedly signing bottles of wine for a charity auction, he will not be attending, despite organizers promising “very special guests”.
Although CDO numbers remain relatively small, Conservative central office was cautious enough to send Paul Holmes, the Eastleigh MP and a party vice-chair, to represent it at the conference.
Senior Tory insiders, already worried about what they see as a party within a party, were particularly alarmed when it emerged in March that former Ukip donor Arron Banks had held discussions with Peter Cruddas, a banker and Conservative peer, about the CDO job.