Former United National Congress (UNC) chairman Jack Warner believes the move by Prime Minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar to bestow the nation's highest award to two former prime ministers was not genuine.
And he is hoping former prime ministers Basdeo Panday and Patrick Manning decline the Order of the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago.
Warner, in a telephone interview, said, "It is not genuine at all.
Whatever Mrs Persad-Bissessar does or does not do has always had some ulterior motive. My hope is that neither of them will fall for it, but then again one never knows, so I wait and see."
Warner said Persad-Bissessar was looking for legitimacy for her Government and for the controversial Constitution (Amendment) Bill when she made the announcement at an Independence reception at the Diplomatic Centre, St Anns, on Thursday night.
"And she believe that by conferring these awards on these two particular gentlemen in the last year of her Government will give her the kind of legitimacy that she is longing for," he said.
Trinidad and Tobago celebrates 52nd Independence anniversary next Sunday.
Persad-Bissessar said Manning and Panday were worthy of the awards and it was fitting to pay tribute to those who came before.