Operation Big Dog 2.0: Boris Johnson plans a roaring blast back at rebels with slew of health and housing reforms
- The PM is due to set out a range of policies to fight back against Tory rebels
- Boris Johnson will attempt to show he is still full of ideas
- The policies will include a major expansion of the Right to Buy scheme
Despite the threat of a ballot on his leadership, the Prime Minister will make it clear that his Government plans to focus on policies that can win the next election for the Conservatives.
The idea is to show that Mr Johnson is still brimming with ideas for improving the country – and that it would be foolish for his MPs to get rid of him.
This week will see a slew of health announcements, including the revelation today that the NHS has carried out one million checks for cancer and other diseases as part of a post-pandemic catch-up programme.
Boris Johnson is facing a mass rebellion amid the Partygate scandal and release of the Sue Gray report
Health Secretary Sajid Javid will also publish a report by Sir Gordon Messenger, a former Royal Marine general who served in Iraq and Afghanistan, into the future of NHS management.
The review will look at ways of replicating good leadership across the NHS, and ensuring that the best leaders are attracted to the health service.
The Government will also expand on its plans to extend the right to buy, one of Margaret Thatcher’s flagship policies.
Mr Johnson wants to make it easier for people who live in housing association properties to buy their own homes.
A No 10 source said: ‘This week the Prime Minister will be focusing on important issues the public want us to address, such as the NHS, the cost of living, and housing.’
The PM, pictured with wife Carrie Johnson, has attended multiple Platinum Jubilee events this weekend – and was booed by the public during his arrival at St Paul’s Cathedral
Boris Johnson had to apologise to the Queen after it emerged a raucous party took place at 10 Downing Street the night before the Duke of Edinburgh’s funeral
Former Tory leader Sir Iain Duncan Smith urged Mr Johnson to unveil more traditional Conservative policies, such as tax cuts.
He said: ‘Will the Conservative Government please stand up. Boris Johnson and the Conservative Party need to stand up and become Conservative in government.
‘Those in the squeezed middle have seen taxes rise dramatically. The Conservatives need to cut taxes to ease the pain of the crisis.’
In a speech this week, Mr Johnson will say that he wants 2.5million people who rent housing association properties to have the chance to buy their homes at a discount.
He is also expected to signal his support for the construction of more ‘flat-pack’ homes.
Under the right-to-buy policy, tenants living in council houses can get a discount of up to 70 per cent of the market price, depending on how long they have lived there, or a maximum of £87,200, rising to £116,200 in London.
There is a less generous scheme for renters of housing association properties, with a discount of between £9,000 and £16,000.
Mr Johnson is said to want to offer these tenants a bigger discount
This week ministers will also update the public on how the NHS is delivering the ‘biggest ever catch-up programme’, with a vast expansion in scans and tests in community clinics.
Since February the number of patients waiting more than two years for treatment has more than halved.
Sir Gordon’s findings on the NHS come after a sharp increase in central bureaucracy in the NHS.
The doubling in the numbers working in NHS England and the Department of Health and Social Care – with the biggest rises seen at the highest levels – over the last two years come at a time when the nursing workforce rose by just 7 per cent.
The figures show the central workforce rose from 7,883 to 14,515, with the number of senior officials rising by 125 per cent, as the pay bill went from £42million to £83million.
Sir Gordon is also understood to be concerned that too much NHS management energy is focused on immediate and short-term tasks, with too little attention paid to the long-term agenda.