10/15/2012 05:50 EDT | Updated 12/15/2012 05:12 EST

B.C. Conservatives expel some members, censure others

The B.C. Conservative Party announced Monday it was taking on dissent from within the party by ousting some members and censuring others.

The party says it sent disciplinary letters to 15 party members for their "ongoing and public calls for a leadership review."

The affected party members were expected to receive their letters by the end of the week, but the party declined to release the names of those individuals.

Dissent within the B.C. Conservative Party has made headlines in recent weeks as party leader John Cummins told dissidents to get in line or leave the party.

The dissidents fired back by demanding Cummins step down as party leader, saying he’s not the right person to the lead the party into the May 2013 provincial election.

The party also took a hit last month when its only sitting MLA John van Dongen left the party after members voted against holding a review of Cummins’s leadership.

Party unity

The party also announced Monday it was creating a new “Unity Committee” aimed at engaging members and bringing the party together.

"We recognize that there are things which can be done to improve our internal processes," Cummins said in a written release.

"The motion was clear when it said that we are looking for ways to engage our members, Constituency Association Presidents and boards, and improve communications within our party."

The Board also passed a motion to express "its full confidence and support for John Cummins as the leader of the B.C. Conservative Party heading into the May 2013 election."

The most recent Angus Reid poll released on Friday showed support for the party had fallen from 19 to 16 per cent since September.

The governing B.C. Liberals remained steady with 26 per cent, up from 25 per cent, while the B.C. NDP rose from 46 to 49 per cent. The online poll of 800 B.C. adults was conducted from Oct. 9 to 12.